The DC Experience

The program includes several briefings at U.S. government agencies, nonprofit organizations, embassies, and other organizations. Last summer, students heard from speakers at the U.S. Department of State, World Bank, the embassies of Saudi Arabia and the Netherlands, and the United States Institute of Peace.

The School of International Service recognizes that “service is not a moment, it’s a mindset.” The Community of Scholars program imbibes this service mindset, requiring residential students to participate in a community of service project involving the underserved Washington, DC, community. In addition to gaining a valuable life experience, students will also obtain service hours that may be used to supplement high school requirements. Commuting students are welcome to participate in the community service.

On many afternoons, students will attend workshops or hear from guest speakers. Workshops may include a panel of AU alumni discussing careers in international relations, a workshop on the college admissions process given by representatives from AU’s Admissions, and a session on resume-writing given by AU’s Career Center. Additionally, guest speakers will discuss subjects such as the United Nations and the U.S. Agency for International Development.

Students will have free time to enjoy campus life, whether working out at the fitness center or relaxing on the quad or at one of AU’s cafes. Structured evening activities may include barbecues, the viewing of international films, an evening monument tour, and a Capitol Steps performance at the Ronald Reagan Building. Chaperoned small group trips to the Smithsonian museums, Georgetown, and the National Zoo will be organized for the weekend.

Living on Campus

Dormitory housing is available for the campus segment of the program. Students will be housed in air-conditioned doubles or triples in a centrally located dormitory on AU’s beautiful northwest Washington, DC, campus. All linens—sheets, blankets, and a towel will be provided. AU upperclassmen,as well as a senior resident advisor, will live in the dormitories and serve as mentors throughout the program. The front desk of the dormitory is staffed 24-hours a day, seven days a week. The front doors of the dormitory are kept locked at all times; students swipe their AU student ID cards every time they enter. Wi-Fi is available in the dorms and students are encouraged to bring laptops if they own them; however campus computers are available to students in the library.

Meals are served in the Terrace Dining Room (TDR) in the Mary Graydon Center. The hours of operation are the following: Breakfast (7 - 9 am), Lunch (11 a.m. - 2 p.m.), and Dinner (5 - 7:30 p.m.). Funds, called “EagleBucks,” will be added to students’ ID cards to be used at TDR or other campus eating establishments (Mega Bytes, Eagles Nest, Mud Box, and Davenport Cafe). EagleBucks are also accepted at a few close-by eating places—Chipotle, Z-Burger, and Whole Foods.