Get to Know Us

Washington Semester student Tracy Hanqing

A Running Start

Washington Semester Program student Tracy Hanqing interns at a nonprofit that empowers more women to run for office.

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Former Vice President Joe Biden taking selfie with Washington Semester Students

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Go behind the scenes with Washington Semester Program students, past and present!


Washington Semester student ambassador Molly Quilin

Meet Our Student Ambassadors

Read the stories of eight current Washington Semester Program students.

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An Unsurpassed Experience

When you join the Washington Semester Program at American University, you will be connected with an accredited top-ranked university with 70 years of experience providing college students from around the U.S. and the world with internships and seminars that align professional development with academic coursework.

Join us and immerse yourself in a global environment while pursuing academic coursework and an internship in your field of interest.


You will learn from professors who are experts in their fields and who know Washington, DC. They will introduce you to new concepts, challenge your perspectives, and give you the opportunity to learn from respected experts. You also will visit international organizations and be a part of history as it unfolds.


No matter what your career interests or college major, your internship will fit your goals. You will expand your network and acquire valuable experience that distinguishes you from other students - at your home college - and in future internships and jobs.

What Sets Us Apart

  • Earn 12-17 American University credits that you transfer back to your home university.
  • Learn from guest speakers who are at the top of their fields.
  • Benefit from site visits to Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, NGOs, and international nonprofit organizations.
  • Intern at a diverse range of organizations, government agencies, businesses, or Fortune 500 companies in the DC-area.
  • Unsurpassed experience working with college students coming to DC for internships.
  • Professional internships, in which you will gain practical knowledge of a career field.
  • Comprehensive career guidance toward solidifying your career plan.
  • Individual feedback on your resume, LinkedIn profile, and professional correspondence.
  • Guided training on communication and navigating professional events.
  • International and DC connections by way of your internship and networking events.
  • Opportunities to make personalized connections with professional mentors.
  • Access to AU events, such as Orientation, an internship fair, and Professional Development Day.
  • AU student services & resources and living on campus.

Discovering a Passion for Peace Building


Hear the alumni story of Dr. Joseph Young, an AU Associate Professor and Washington Semester Program alum! He sheds light on the benefit of experiential learning for DC-based college students in today's world.

Program Brochure

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First established in 1947 making it one of the first programs of its kind

Top Majors: Political Science, Economics, Business, International Relations, and Journalism

Students from 15 different countries