Washington program offers students credit, connections in politics

Roshan Bhagat

One can fulfill 18 credit hours and an internship by spending an exciting semester in the nation’s capital.

The Washington Program in National Issues is a 15-week academic program offered each spring semester for a select group of students in any major. The students study the U.S. political process and national policy issues firsthand in Washington, D.C., according to information from the political science department.

The program is designed to give students experience in a real working environment while they learn about the political system.

Political science professor Richard Robyn, director of WPNI said, “huge number of alums that do this program end up in D.C.”

“Washington is flooded with students looking for internships and it is a great way to build connections for the future,” Robyn said.

In an e-mail, Abby Brittain, senior political science major who participated in the WPNI program, said: “You have a unique experience to learn about government and the work force hands on. You will meet individuals who will ease the burden of job searching after graduation, and most importantly you will be ahead of the majority of those you are competing against for those jobs.”

The program is open to junior and senior students in an accredited college with a minimum grade point average of 2.75. They must have completed two political science courses.

A maximum of 24 students will be selected for the program each year from Kent State based on academic record and promise of success, Robyn said.

The program costs more than attending school in Kent because of the higher living costs in Washington, according to the political science department.

Students live in an apartment buildings in the Washington area. They work at their internship three days per week and attend briefings two days per week. Briefings are held throughout the Washington metropolitan area.

For more information on the program, contact professor Robyn in the Department of Political Science at 302 Bowman Hall or call 330-672-2060.

Contact arts and sciences reporter Roshan Bhagat at [email protected].