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Washington Mentorship Frequently Asked Questions

WHAT IS THE WASHINGTON MENTORSHIP PROGRAM?

The Mentorship Program is a fall semester, non-degree program open to students who have been admitted to AU for the spring semester. The Mentorship Program is an option for students to take courses at AU prior to formally starting their degree program in the spring.

Mentorship students take three core courses specific to the program, including the Mentored Field Practicum (internship) course. Being non-degree students in the fall allows Mentorship participants the opportunity to pursue a professional experience and earn college credit before matriculating to AU in the spring.

WHAT IS THE DEADLINE FOR ACCEPTING THE ADMISSION OFFER?

The official deadline for reserving a spot in the Washington Mentorship Program is May 1, 2017.

To reserve a spot, a student will need to complete an Enrollment Agreement and Housing Application form, found on the myAU Portal (myau.american.edu), and submit a $600 deposit.


HOW MANY STUDENTS CAN PARTICIPATE?

The Washington Mentorship Program has between 150 and 180 students on average. The Mentorship Program in Greece can have up to 24 students. The Mentorship Program in England can have up to 24 students. Deposits are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

IS MY CHILD ELIGIBLE FOR FINANCIAL AID FOR THE FALL SEMESTER, WHILE IN THE WASHINGTON MENTORSHIP PROGRAM?

Unfortunately, no, but students may be eligible for private loans.

WHAT IS THE CONTACT INFORMATION FOR THE FINANCIAL AID OFFICE?

Concerning financial aid packages, please contact an undergraduate financial aid officers in the Office of Financial Aid at 202-885-6500.

CAN STUDENTS STILL DOUBLE MAJOR?

Yes. However, this is something students should wait until October/November to discuss with their degree program advisor.

WHO WILL BE THE PROFESSORS?

The Mentorship professors are full-time, American University faculty with appointments to the School of Professional and Extended Studies. Professors teaching Intercultural Understanding may also teach for AU's School of International Service. Professors teaching Introduction to College Inquiry and Politics in the US may also teach for AU’s School of Public Affairs or other academic units.

In addition, College Writing, mathematics, and statistics professors hold appointments in the College of Arts & Sciences.

WHAT ARE THE CORE COURSES LIKE?

There are three core courses in the Mentorship Program: Intercultural Understanding, Introduction to College Inquiry, and the Mentored Field Practicum. All courses employ experiential learning concepts and provide students the opportunity for active learning, collaboration, teamwork, and interactive discussions.

Intercultural Understanding is a block (extended) class which meets once a week. It is a combination of lecture, discussion, guest speakers, and experiential learning activities which focuses on such themes as intercultural negotiations and social media technology and its intercultural effectiveness.

Introduction to College Inquiry meets twice a week. Students use different research methods to analyze contemporary issues and controversies while utilizing the various resources available at American University and in Washington, D.C.

The Mentored Field Practicum provides students the opportunity to work in a professional setting two days a week while also meeting regularly with their professor/mentor to discuss their experience.

ARE THERE ANY REQUIREMENTS FOR THE PRACTICUM?

There are no prerequisites for the MFP course.

HOW ARE STUDENTS PLACED IN THEIR MENTORED FIELD PRACTICUM (INTERNSHIP)?

WMP does not place students in internships; students are given the tools to secure an internship on their own with guidance from their MFP professor and program advisor. Searching for an internship is a key skill developed through the practicum course.

Over the course of the summer, students are given access to resume resources and work with program staff to fine-tune their resumes in June and early July. Students are then given access to the SPExS Internship Database, which has one of the largest collections of internship offerings in the DC area. Students are highly encouraged to start applying to internships posted on the database over the summer.

On the first day of class, students attend the school’s Internship Fair, where they can meet with over 100 internships sites. Finally, students also work with the WMP office and their MFP professor to fine-tune their search and secure an internship.

HOW DOES THE MFP EXPERIENCE HELP MENTORSHIP STUDENTS?

Mentorship students will start to make contacts, build credentials, and gain real-world experience through the mentored field practicum. Internships are available in areas of interest ranging from politics and justice, communications, international affairs, psychology, and arts & sciences.

HOW MANY CREDITS CAN MENTORSHIP STUDENTS TAKE?

The program is flexible and allows students to take between 12 and 15 credits. By taking 12 credits, Mentorship students can dedicate more time to their internship and focus on their course work.

HOW WILL CREDITS TRANSFER?

All credits and grades received in the fall semester will transfer to a student’s American University degree and appear on their AU transcript. Provided students successfully complete a 15 credit course load (or bring in AP or IB credit), they will not be behind other freshmen.

Intercultural Understanding counts towards AU’s General Education requirements. Introduction to Inquiry and the Mentored Field Practicum courses will count as elective credits. College Writing, mathematics or statistics courses, and Politics in the US all count toward specific AU requirements.

Please note that students who enroll in the Washington Mentorship Program must abide by the policies, regulations, and codes relating to student behavior at American University. Any student who violates the Academic Integrity Code while in the Mentorship Program will have their spring admission offer reevaluated. Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 in order to meet the standard for satisfactory academic progress. The GPA earned in fall semester will be the student’s starting GPA for the spring semester.

 

CAN MENTORSHIP STUDENTS USE AU STUDENT SERVICES?

Mentorship students will have full access to all AU facilities and activities. These include computer labs, library, fitness centers, resource centers, clubs, speakers, campus events, etc.

CAN MENTORSHIP STUDENTS BRING CARS?

Mentorship students, like other resident student, are not allowed to bring cars. Under special circumstances, students may be granted permission, but this must be arranged with campus transportation services.

IS IT MANDATORY TO HAVE A MEAL PLAN?

All students living on-campus are required to have a minimum 175-block meal plan each semester. However, students may opt to have a larger 200, 225, or 250-block meal plans. Commuter students (living off-campus) are not required to have a meal plan.

WHAT ARE THE HEALTH CARE OPTIONS?

Mentorship students have access to AU's Student Health Center located on campus. D.C. law states that all students must have health insurance - through their parents or through AU. If a student has insurance by way of their parent's plan, they can waive AU Health Insurance through their myAU.american.edu portal. More information about the Student Health Center and insurance requirements is available on the website.
 

What is the tuition insurance?

The tuition insurance is an optional tuition refund plan for students and parents. This private insurance program enhances American University's published refund policy, helping minimize financial losses should students suffer serious illness or accident that results in withdrawal from AU before the semester is completed. The insurance policy is elective and covers 75% of tuition and room charges.

HOW WILL FALL SEMESTER HOUSING ASSIGNMENTS BE MADE?

The Housing & Dining Programs office at AU will determine housing assignments. Mentorship students will receive roommates' names and information over the summer when it is posted on their myAU.american.edu account. Room and roommate requests are made through the housing preference questionnaire.

What is the difference between the Mentorship program and the AU Gap program?

The Mentorship Program is a full-time (12-15 credits) program for spring admitted AU students. The structure and courses of the program help students stay on track to graduate from AU. The AU Gap Program is a part-time (7 credits) program that consists of a 3-credit seminar course (American Politics or Global Business) and a 4-credit Mentored Field Practicum (3 days on site). If students are interested in the AU Gap Program, please note that it is a part-time program and students will need to make up the additional credits by taking extra courses another semester or bringing in AP, IB, or transfer credits.

Quote from a student

“This program has helped me grow as an individual on various levels. I have matured within the span of four months and my communication, organization, and time management skills have improved significantly. I have an idea of what type of career I want to pursue and having this internship has helped solidify my career path more."
- Bawornluck Sasiphong, WMP 2015

Visiting AU? Let us know!

We would love to meet you while on campus and share more information about the Mentorship Program. Contact us at 202-895-4936 or mentorship@american.edu. You can also sign-up for an American University tour and information session.