"Through the course of the Hudson Institute Political Studies program, I learned an incredible amount: not only were the teachers engaging and knowledgeable, but I became more aware of my own strengths and weaknesses, and developed a greater sense of what I hope to accomplish in the future."
-Grace Athanas-Linden

"Being surrounded by peers that all had different but equally informed opinions and who were also open to new ideas allowed for stimulating conversations in and out of the classroom."
-Sarah Baker

"The Hudson Political Studies fellowship was an incredible experience. The opportunity to study great texts with excellent professors and students strengthened my understanding of the political thought which founds our republic. Furthermore, the program’s keynote speakers, policy simulations, and various trips complimented the classroom instruction by relating political thought to history and political practice."
-Angelique Talmor

"With an intense course of study, the Political Studies Program revealed the skills necessary for good citizenship.  More importantly, the program introduced us to those people who best exhibited the civic spirit needed for a free government."
-Ambrose Donnelly

"Hudson erects a Mount of Parnassus in the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue. Here, the best minds meet, mingle, and metamorphose. Helped by experienced statesmen, enlightened scholars, and those who are both, we grow to be better individuals and citizens."
-Hansong Li

"For six weeks I had the opportunity to learn under some of the best professors in our county. I was able to meet Generals, ambassadors, economics, senators and public intellectual. All that was asked of me was to think. Not to think this or that way, but to simply what all this information, history, and experience meant to me. I came out of Hudson Institute Political Studies will a lot more knowledge about our country and about myself. I most grateful for the fact that I left with even more questions."
-Grady Nixon

"Well-run, challenging, and engaging, the Hudson Institute's Summer Fellowship Program is where learning and application become intertwined. The relationships and experiences made here will remain with you for years to come."
-Conor Powers

Offering exceptional students a unique learning experience focused on the serious study of politics.

Hudson Institute Political Studies offers top undergraduates a Summer Fellowship in political theory and practice that broadens and deepens understanding of public policy and American political principles. The Fellowship combines rigorous study of politics and political thought through week-long seminars led by master teachers, policy workshops featuring think tank experts and experienced government officials, and a distinguished speaker series of exemplary figures from public life.  The 2018 Summer Fellowship features seminars that examine Plato’s Republic, Machiavelli’s The Prince, and Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America along with selections from the Bible, Federalist Papers, Lincoln-Douglas Debates, and current scholarship on democratic capitalism and American foreign policy in the Middle East.

Hudson Institute Political Studies is hosted at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and lasts for six weeks.  Students participate free of charge, are given complimentary accommodations, and receive a $3,000 stipend.

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Summer Fellowship

Political Foundings with Robert C. Bartlett and J. Michael Hoffpauir

Jun 19 - Jun 23 at Georgetown University

Political philosophy is, fundamentally, a discussion about the best regime. Therefore we begin with an investigation into political foundings. We read two dramatically different texts —one that takes as its bearing man’s inclination to act malevolently, and another that attempts to found a city in a quest to understand justice. Reading The Prince, we inquire into Machiavelli’s innovations, and ask if his political science looks similar to our own. We also begin Plato’s Republic, which we will read throughout the program, to see  what is needed to form a just city.

The American Founding with Timothy W. Burns and Murray Dry

Jun 26 - Jul 02 at Georgetown University

Having discussed political foundings broadly in the first week’s seminar, we turn to a particular founding. We read America’s key founding documents, and consider—in comparison with Machiavelli’s teachings and Socratic philosophy—the political justifications made by the Founders of the regime that promises life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We examine whether the American regime at its founding was informed by an understanding of justice, both for individuals and the political community, or whether the Founders were more concerned with uniting a multiplicity of “particular interests” into a stable and strong country.

The Ideal Republic with Mary P. Nichols and Ronna C. Burger

Jul 03 - Jul 07 at Georgetown University

We return to Plato’s Republic, an assessment of the American regime in hand, for a fuller evaluation of theoretical justice, as Socrates brings it to life. We look at this city’s founding, taking note of how the city is constituted, who populates it, and for what purpose it exists. Discussion focuses on whether the just city is in fact just, and whether such a city requires just citizens, or even allows them to be just. We further assess whether these citizens are actually happy, a topic not at all unimportant for the regime that gives the people a say in its governance.

The American Refounding with Robert K. Faulkner and James W. Ceaser

Jul 10 - Jul 14 at Georgetown University

Machiavelli proposed the necessity of re-founding political regimes—as a means of putting off the inevitable death which comes to all things. We examine America’s near death—the nation “conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal,” but crippled by the original sin of slavery, which precipitated a great Civil War. We look closely at the leadership of Abraham Lincoln and inquire into the re-founding of America achieved through Emancipation—was it even a re-founding or instead a second American Revolution? Did Lincoln achieve the full promise of America’s founding ideals?


American Public Policy with Michael Doran and Yuval Levin and John Sawicki and John P. Walters

Jul 17 - Jul 21 at Georgetown University

We examine both  American domestic and foreign policy with a view to discussing America’s most pressing problems.

Our domestic policy sections look at democratic capitalism, with a view to understanding its theoretical underpinnings and its current effects of the economy and culture of the United States, and at policies of law and order, with a view to understanding the relationship between security and self government.

Our foreign policy section looks at American policy in Asia and the Middle East, with a focus on the policy implications of different worldviews, and the different options the American president has in addressing the Iranian and North Korean nuclear programs. We also engage in a policy simulation at the end of the week. Students are assigned a point of view or office such as Secretary of State or member of the Armed Services Committee, as well as a scenario to which they must respond. On Friday, they present their recommendations, debate, and decide on a course of action.

Politics and Wisdom with Janet A. Dougherty and Frank N. Pagano

Jul 24 - Jul 28 at Georgetown University

No consideration of politics, republican or otherwise, can be complete without an examination of the limits of politics and a serious consideration of those aspects of human life which conflict with or offer alternatives to the political life. In this, the last week of the program, we examine foundings in relation to religion and literature, and consider the possibility that the best regime is one not realizable on earth, but rather imagined, or created, by a divine being. We further consider how religion and literature, which one might say are not overtly political, inform human life in this world and the next.

Distinguished Faculty & Speakers

Offering exceptional students a unique learning experience focused on the serious study of politics.