If you could study with some of the world’s top thinkers on some of the world’s most important topics – war and grand strategy, economic policy, or political thought and philosophy – which would you choose?

Each year, the Hertog Foundation brings together top college students to the nation’s capital to explore the theory and practice of politics in an intensive seminar setting with outstanding faculty.

This summer’s offerings provide students the flexibility to create their ideal summer experience – by applying for a seven-week summer fellowship or choosing among one to two week seminars to create their own individualized course of study.

Watch this video to learn more

Political Studies Program

7 weeks / $2,000 stipend + housing

This highly competitive fellowship is designed to reflect the broad curriculum of the Hertog Foundation. Hertog Summer Fellows take courses in a wide variety of subjects, from political philosophy to contemporary public affairs, from economics to foreign policy. Thirty-six exceptional undergraduates and recent grads (2019 and 2020) will be invited to participate.

Summer Courses

1-2 weeks / $500-$1,000 stipend + housing

Students seeking a more specialized experience can apply to the courses within the Political Studies Program that best fit their interests and knowledge level. This option is also ideal for students who have other jobs, internships, or commitments during the summer. Up to 140 undergraduates and recent grads (2019 and 2020) will be selected to participate.

Week 1

Weeks 2 & 3 (Select a track)

The American Political Order

Engage key texts that have helped shape the political idea of America.

Family & Politics

Explore the ways family life can affect the life of a political community.

Statesmanship & Partisanship

Reflect on how we can promote the common good amid a resurgence of party spirit.

Statesmen & Philosophers

Examine two ways of life – the philosophic and the political – through close readings of Aristotle and Shakespeare.

Weeks 4 & 5 (Select a Track)

Foundations of Grand Strategy

Assess grand strategic theory and practice in Thucydides and Plutarch.

National Identity & Why It Matters

Explore the idea of national identity and its role in maintaining a successful political order.

Religion & Politics

Examine the ways in which religion and politics intersect in a liberal democracy.

Weeks 6 & 7 (Select a Track)

Chinese Grand Strategy

Explore the implications of China’s global rise for U.S. primacy and the liberal international order.

American Democratic Capitalism

Explore the intersection of theory and practice in our national politics, and particularly in our key economic debates.

Israel as Nation-State

Study the modern history of Israel, from an idea to a state.

Varieties of American Conservatism

Discover the intellectual roots of modern conservatism.

Political Thought & Philosophy

The American Political Order

Engage key texts that have helped shape the political idea of America.

Family & Politics

Explore the ways family life can affect the life of a political community.

Statesmanship & Partisanship

Reflect on how we can promote the common good amid a resurgence of party spirit.

Statesmen & Philosophers

Examine two ways of life – the philosophic and the political – through close readings of Aristotle and Shakespeare.

National Identity & Why It Matters

Explore the idea of national identity and its role in maintaining a successful political order.

Religion & Politics

Examine the ways in which religion and politics intersect in a liberal democracy.

War & Foreign Affairs

The Yom Kippur War: A Case Study in Strategy, Power, & Character

Explore the Yom Kippur War, one of the great understudied hinge points of history.

Nixon in China: Did We Get China Wrong?

Study Nixon’s strategic opening to Beijing in 1972 and how it shaped U.S.-China relations today.

Foundations of Grand Strategy

Assess grand strategic theory and practice in Thucydides and Plutarch.

Chinese Grand Strategy

Explore the implications of China’s global rise for U.S. primacy and the liberal international order.

Israel as Nation-State

Study the modern history of Israel, from an idea to a state.

War Studies Program

Learn the theory, practice, organization, and control of war and military forces.

Economics & Domestic Policy

Can Partisanship Be Fixed?

Investigate the debate over parties by examining their nature and role in American political life.

American Democratic Capitalism

Explore the intersection of theory and practice in our national politics, and particularly in our key economic debates.

Varieties of American Conservatism

Discover the intellectual roots of modern conservatism.

WHO SHOULD APPLY?

Any college or university undergraduate, or very recent graduate (2019 or 2020) not already pursuing an advanced degree, may apply.

Admission is extremely competitive, and every year we decline admission to many highly qualified applicants simply due to lack of space. A typical competitive applicant will have:

  • An undergraduate GPA > 3.5
  • Strong letter(s) of recommendation from a professor or another individual who is in a position to comment on the applicant’s academic or professional qualifications
  • A statement of purpose that tells us how the applicant’s interests and ambitions relate to the preferred program. The statement of purpose is very important and deserves careful attention.
  • An academic writing sample that demonstrates the applicant’s powers of analysis and independent thought, and not only their ability to do scholarly research or comment on a text.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS

  1. CV or résumé

  2. Personal Statement

    Describe the political questions you find most interesting, your future ambitions, and how these relate to your preferred program(s). (1,000 words or less)

  3. A college transcript

    Unofficial

  4. Academic Recommendation

    Minimum of one academic letter of recommendation that specifically speaks to your background and interests as they relate to the program

  5. An academic writing sample

    20 pages maximum

Other Courses You Might Be Interested In

Can Partisanship Be Fixed?

Investigate the debate over parties by examining their nature and role in American political life.

Nixon in China: Did We Get China Wrong?

Study Nixon’s strategic opening to Beijing in 1972 and how it shaped U.S.-China relations today.

The Yom Kippur War: A Case Study in Strategy, Power, & Character

Explore the Yom Kippur War, one of the great understudied hinge points of history.

The Limits of Politics

Explore the boundaries of politics from the perspective of the household and the divine.

The American Character

Explore issues of American identity, character, and citizenship with classic short stories.

Thucydides and the Peloponnesian War

Study the Peloponnesian War with renowned classicist and historian Donald Kagan.