Pat Buchanan, conservative writer and former presidential candidate
David Broder, of The Washington Post, “dean” of national political
reporters (Broder died March 9, 2011)
Rick Berke, a long-time former reporter and editor of The New York Times
Eleanor Clift,Daily Beast, and Dan Balz, The Washington Post
Ann Compton, ABC News (retired) and
Bob Merry, former publisher, Congressional Quarterly
Hon. Bob Dole, former U.S. Senate Majority Leader
Sam Donaldson, ABC News (retired), a long-time supporter of the program, with Jessica Peck, Winter/Spring 2000.
Tom Brokaw, former NBC Nightly News anchor, met with students in one
of our early classes
A Washington Semester for Future Political Reporters
The Politics & Journalism Semester is a program of the Washington
Center for Politics & Journalism. The Center brings 8-10
college student journalists, whose career goal is political reporting,
for a Summer and a Fall semester each year (no Winter/Spring semester, beginning in 2015.)
Students learn about campaign, governance and interest group politics
in twice-weekly seminars, featuring political consultants and operatives,
elected and party officials, and national political journalists.
They receive practical experience and exposure to national politics
as reporting interns in major Washington news bureaus.
Two classes are conducted each year, Summer, 8 weeks in June and July, and Fall, 12 weeks from September to November. (Beginning in 2015 our former Winter/Spring semesters are being replaced by the Summer term.)
$750/month Stipend, No Tuition or Fees
Students each receive a $750/month stipend to assist with the cost of
locating and living in Washington, DC. They pay no tuition or other fees. Students must
make their own Washington living arrangements.
Students accepted for a program are obligated to work full
time for news bureaus to which they are assigned, and to attend
Friends of well-known figures in national journalism and politics have helped support The Politicis & Journalism Semester for many years, with commemorative donations. Their gifts honor the lives of the former dean of White House correspondents, Helen Thomas; Tony Payton, a former journalist
Republican political consultant; and political
analyst and Democratic political operative Alan Baron, a native
of Sioux City, Iowa.
Academic credit for the semester is assigned at the discretion of
each student's school.
The program is open to undergraduates, graduate students and recent
(within one or two years) graduates; participants must be at least
second term juniors. Applicants must demonstrate substantial interest
in political journalism as a career goal. Strong preference is
given to those with reporting, writing and producing experience
at school or other papers and broadcast outlets. Published writing
samples (from college or other publications) are essential for
Application and Selection
Interested students apply through participating schools of communication
and journalism (see our list of colleges on this site.)
Each school may propose one or two students
per semester. Applicants are interviewed (by telephone)
by the program director. Students selected for a Fall Semester are notified by
late April, Summer class members by mid- March. Applications
are accepted directly from students or recent graduates of
other schools.The process is fully decribed and an application form is available on the "Application" page of this site. Nominations are due by the fourth Friday in February
for the Summer term and by the second Friday
in April for the Fall semester.