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Washington Mentorship Program: Field Practicum



“Getting an internship as a freshman is probably one of the best things you can do when it comes to college. The work experience is so rewarding and helpful. ” – Pooja Mathur, WMP 2014

Imagine spending two days a week at BBC News, or at Rock the Vote, or even at the U.S. Senate. Think of its impact on your understanding of world issues, how it might change your outlook on your major, or what it could mean to your future. When you join the Mentorship program, this can happen. 

WMP students have the option to participate in a traditional MFP Course or in a Service-Learning MFP. In the traditional MFP, students intern two days a week and meet with their professor once a week or once every other week. The Service-Learning track focuses on public and community services, exploring organizations that improve communities and the lives of individuals in those communities. In the Service-Learning MFP, students intern one and a half days a week and meet with their class every week for discussion and visits to these organizations. Please note: space is limited for the Service-Learning track.

Helping you along your way is an AU professor, serving as your mentor—and guiding you on academic matters and in your internship. Throughout the semester, you read professional articles, write papers, and keep a journal. And, you meet one-on-one regularly with your professor to discuss your experience. The end result: You gain the skills, experience, and contacts necessary to maximize your education and your knowledge of D.C. as a learning laboratory as well as a world-class city.

Regardless of your intended major, you should find an internship that fits. WMP students are given the tools to place themselves in an internship. Searching for an internship is a key skill developed through the practicum course. Over the summer, students are given access to resume resources and work with program staff to fine-tune their resumes during the month of 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. On the first day of class, students attend the school's Internship Bazaar, where they can meet with over 100 internship sites. Students also work with the WMP office and their MFP professor to fine-tune their search and secure an internship.

Here is just a small selection of the Mentored Field Practicum organizations of the fall 2014 class:

  • Aerospace Industries Association
  • American Society of International Law
  • Bulldog Finance Group
  • CBS News
  • Crime Museum
  • Democratic National Committee
  • Embassy of Costa Rica
  • EmeraldPlanet & The EmeraldPlanet TV
  • Gifts for the Homeless
  • Human Rights Campaign
  • National Foundation for Women Legislators
  • Pulmonary Hypertension Association
  • Republican National Committee
  • St. Columba's Nursery School
  • Trust for the National Mall
  • U.S.-Russia Business Council
  • U.S. Small Business Administration
  • Washington Animal Rescue League

 Visiting AU? Let WMP 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.