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Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
  • Locations: Washington D.C., United States
  • Program Terms: Fall Semester, Spring Semester, Summer Semester
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Restrictions: Merrimack applicants only
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring Semester 2019 09/28/2018 10/26/2018 TBA TBA
Fact Sheet:
Areas of Study: American Studies, Government, Journalism, Law, Political Science, Politics, Public Health Housing Options: Apartments, Dormitory, Student Provides Own Housing
Language of Instruction: English Minimum GPA: 2.8
Class Standing: 3-Junior, 4-Senior
Program Description:
Semester Program


US CapitolThe Washington Semester Program provides Merrimack political science majors (and students of other majors with an interest in politics and policy) with the rich opportunity to combine academic and experiential learning. Take advantage of this opportunity to spend a semester at American University while you intern at one of D.C.'s many influential institutions.

Participants in WSP:receive academic credit and:
  • Gain a competitive edge in the job market
  • Learn on-site at key organizations in D.C.
  • Engage with prominent experts and leaders in government, international affairs, non-profit and media organizations
  • Interact with professionals in your field
  • Participate in hands-on seminars
  • Experience the culture of Washington, D.C.
  • Build your professional and personal networks
Additional Opportunities:

Courses and Credits

The Washington Semester Program offers a variety of concentrations so that student can not only study, but get practical experience in the areas of key interest. Concentrations are available in:
Seminar (8 credits): Local, national, and global experts lead immersive seminars in which you explore key issues in your field. Witness first-hand how non-profits, businesses, government agencies and international organizations turn theory into practice. Seminars hone your professional skills through innovative assignments such as: applied learning activities, business plan development, service-learning, use of media and simulations.
Internship (4 credits): Six to eight weeks before the semester begins, you'll gain access to all of the internships in WSP's database that are relevant to the program into which you have been accepted. WSP will provide the information you need about each organization, including descriptions of internship positions and address and phone numbers for our contacts. You can start your search right away, or wait until you arrive in D.C. Either way, you'll have nearly two weeks at the beginning of the semester to attend interviews and make your selection. WSP suggests participants have at least three interviews. Before you arrive, we will also provide you with resources to help you write an effective résumé and cover letter. Learn more about WSP internships Please note internships are not guaranteed.

Research or Elective Course (3-4 credits): Students have the option of choosing to conduct an in-depth research project using Washington, D.C. as a laboratory of information or to take an elective class from American University's hundreds of offerings to fulfill an academic requirement from your home school. Please check with your Academic Advisor in Political Science regarding this option.

If you would like to get a course approved, print off the form NEW GEO Course approval form.pdf. Take the completed form and syllabus to Professor Harry Wessel in the Political Science Department. Students interested in the Public Health Policy Track should go to the appropriate department chair in Health Sciences.

All credits taken abroad come back as transfer credits. Grades will be reflected on the transcript, but not figured into the student's cumulative GPA. Students must earn a 'C' or above for credits to transfer to Merrimack.


DCStudents in the Washington Semester Program are housed at American University's leased apartment building, Berkshire Apartments, located on Massachusetts Avenue between Nebraska Ave and Macomb St, NW as well as in Leonard Hall, located on campus. Please note that Berkshire apartments are only a block away from main campus and a mile from the Tenleytown-AU Metro Stop on the Red Line. The University Shuttle provides transportation between main campus and the Metro.

For details go to the WSP Housing & Dining page.

A link to the online application will be sent to you via e-mail by the Washington Mentorship Program Office. Once you have signed up for University housing, you are committed to living in the residence halls for the period noted.

Housing costs range from $3,660-$7,500.

For Fall Semesters, the deadline to submit the university housing application is JUNE 1.
For Spring Semesters, the deadline to submit the university housing application is NOVEMBER 1.
For The Summer Internship program, housing applications are due with program applications by April 28.

N.B. To withdraw without a late charge, a letter must be received in the Housing & Dining Programs Office before June 1 for the Fall semester or November 1 for the spring semester.



Merrimack students are charged Merrimack's semester tuition rate by American University for the Washington Semester. Students receive a $3,949 tuition credit from AU. Final tuition costs = $18,955.

*Please note that housing is not included in this cost. Note also that
Merrimack internal scholarship aid (whether need or merit-based) does not accompany this program as students are billed by and pay American University.

Several scholarship opportunities are available to applicants to the WSP program.
  • Merrimack political science majors who will be second-semester Juniors at the time of participation may be eligible for the Lombard Scholarship. For details, please click here.
  • Scholarships available through WSP may be found on their scholarship site. Please click here for information about WSP scholarship opportunities.
Additional costs to be considered:
  • Meals WSP meal plan options from $683-3000. Please see WSP's Dining page:
  • Housing costs from $3,660-$7,500.
  • American University also requires its students to purchase its Health Insurance from $800-$1,050. This may be waived. Find details on WSP's Admitted Students page here
  • Books
  • Student Commuter/Resident Parking Pass
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel expenses between home and Washington, D.C.


Students interested in studying in a GEO program must first apply for permission to study abroad through Merrimack's Office of Global Education (GEO). To qualify Merrimack students must be:
  • Second-semester sophomores and above
  • In good academic standing with a minimum 2.8 cumulative GPA
  • In good disciplinary standing 
To apply students must submit the following by March 9, 2018:
  • Online application
  • Faculty reference (form included in online application)
  • Student affairs reference (form included in online application)
  • An Interview with GEO staff to be conducted soon after the application has been submitted, or during the week of March 12th.
After students have been approved by the GEO for semester's study abroad, they may proceed with WSP's online application.

The Washington Semester Program's application deadline for Fall 2018: April 1, 2017