Make Your Summer Count!

The AU Gap Program offers two week immersive, non-credit Summer Institutes for rising high school juniors, seniors, and recent graduates. Open to both domestic and international applicants.

Students in this program will:

  • Experience the nation's capital first hand through site visits
  • Engage with inspiring guest speakers
  • Participate in simulations
  • Build a professional network in DC
  • Be challenged intellectually

Upon completion of the program, students will have gained an immersive college-like experience and a firmer grasp of D.C.'s inner workings.

Summer Institute Dates

Session 1: Sunday, June 24 through Friday, July 6
Session 2: Sunday, July 8 through Friday, July 20

Please note: there is no internship component during the summer program.

Government, Justice, and Law Seminar

The AU Gap Program Summer Institute in Government, Justice, and Law prepares high school students for college coursework in U.S. government, politics, and the judicial system. The program will expose students to the history, processes, and organizations related to U.S. politics and government. In addition, students will learn about the U.S. justice system and the role of the courts, as well as the interrelationship among law enforcement, courts, and the judicatory system.

The program will be experiential, with a focus on active learning - consisting of daily lectures, guest speakers, simulations, and excursions in Washington, DC.


Summer Institute Tuition
$3,000 (per program)
Optional Campus Housing and Dining 1
$1,500 (double room in residence hall)

1The above cost is estimated for Summer 2018. Exact cost of on campus housing will be available in Spring 2018. All students are encouraged to live on campus; however residing on campus is not a requirement. If students live in Maryland, Virginia, or DC and want to commute each day to campus for the program, that will be acceptable with written acknowledgement from a parent or guardian.

Application Process


Applicants should be a rising high school junior, senior, or recent graduate and possess a minimum of a 3.0 high school GPA. Admission decisions are based on each applicant's academic record, essay, recommendation, and motivations to attend the Gap Program Summer Institutes. Additionally, we assess other characteristics such as maturity, leadership, personal character and potential contribution to the American University community.

The summer AU Gap program is open to U.S. and international students.

How to Apply

  1. Create an account.
  2. After you have created an account, complete the application.
  3. After you have submitted the first portion of your application, you must return to your account and complete supplemental items (once you refresh the page, supplemental items should be an option).

    Note: Your application will not be considered until you have submitted the required supplemental items.

Supplemental Items

In addition to the online application, applicants must submit either electronically (upload with your application or by email) or via mail:

  • Official copy of current high school transcript or international equivalent

Please note: if you are an international applicant, you must also demonstrate proof of English Proficiency. As proof of English fluency, we accept the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or Pearson's Test of English (PTE).

Minimum scores for admission to the Gap Summer Institutes are:

Paper Based TOEFL
Internet Based TOEFL
80 (Minimum of 18 on Speaking & Listening)
Your supplemental items may also be submitted by email to

Mail Via United States Postal Service (USPS):

School of Professional & Extended Studies
Office of Enrollment
4400 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20016-8124

Mail Via Courier Service (UPS, FedEx, DHL):

Office of Enrollment
4801 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Suite 218
Washington, DC 20016-8001

Summer 2018 Deadlines

Early Registration Deadline: Feb 20
Deposit Deadline: Apr 1 

Final Registration Deadline: May 15
Deposit Deadline: Jun 1

Sample Site Visits

  • U.S. Capitol
  • Library of Congress
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Newseum
  • Democratic National Committee (DNC)
  • Republican National Committee (RNC)
  • Federal Judicial Center


Sarah Basilion
(202) 895-4869