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Washington DC Internship Program

Cal State DC Spring/Summer 2019 Application and Information Sessions

Date Room Time
Wednesday, August 29th H-113 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Thursday, August 30th H-113 5:30 pm- 6:30 pm
Monday, September 3rd
H-113 12:00 pm- 1:00 pm
Tuesday, September 4th
H-113 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm

Wednesday, September 5th

Thursday, September 6th



5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

2:30 pm - 3:30 pm



Since 2006, the Cal State DC program has offered students opportunities to study and intern in our nation's capital. Through our program students earn academic credit while interning in Washington. Internships can be with nonprofits, advocacy groups, congressional offices, executive agencies, museums, security firms, business groups, political parties, artistic organizations, news and media companies, and a variety of other offices in and around Washington, D.C. Juniors, seniors, and graduate students from ALL MAJORS are encouraged to apply.  (Students from other CSU campuses are eligible to apply for the Summer program only during 2018.)  The program is neither partisan nor ideological and welcomes students from all political persuasions. 


Below you will find information and links to additional information about the application process, the courses, internship opportunities, financial aid, and housing information. You will also find information about other services provided through this program like special networking receptions, a speaker series, and tours of interesting places during your summer stay.

Program Costs

Program costs can vary based upon personal preferences. The primary costs include tuition, room and board, and transportation to and from DC. Housing for Spring semester is approximately $4000, while housing for Summer is approximately $3000. Tuition for Spring is the exact same as if you were taking the classes on the CSU Fullerton campus. In the summer, all students must register and pay tuition and fees through the CSUF Summer Session or Open University (for non CSUF participants).  Airfare runs approximately $450-$550 for a round trip ticket. For more details, see the student budget sheet for this program.

Similar programs often charge thousands of dollars more. Student should contact for exact information about costs and about available scholarships and financial support. Financial aid is available on a competitive basis to CSU Fullerton students through our program. Although financial assistance is available, interested students are encouraged to prepare and save for such a program and treat it as an investment in their futures. 



Program and Scholarship Application

Application for the 2019 Spring Program will be available soon.

Application for the 2019 Summer Program will be available soon.


Program Requirements:

The Cal State DC program is open to all CSUF students in good standing. Non-CSUF students may participate only in the Summer program.  Typically, students must have attained Junior standing (60 earned units) prior to enrolling for Cal State DC classes.  Normally a 3.0 GPA is required for admission to the program. However, students with lower GPAs are encouraged to apply if they also have strong references and relevant experiences and activities.


Application Deadline:

Program Requirements

The Spring Cal State DC program is open to all CSUF Juniors, Seniors, and Graduate students in good standing. Normally a 3.0 GPA is required for admission to the program. However, students with lower GPAs are encouraged to apply if they also have strong references and relevant experiences and activities.

Application Deadline

Applications for Spring and Summer 2019 are accepted on a rolling basis, but students are encouraged to apply as early as possible.  Please consult with the program staff concerning available space in the program for late applicants.


Important Reminder


This application is only for the Cal State DC Internship Program. By completing this application, students are eligible for inclusion in our program and will be considered for financial aid through our fellowship program. This application is NOT for an internship or for other scholarships or financial aid.  If accepted into the program, students must::

  1. work with our faculty and staff to secure a DC Internship
  2. register for the appropriate courses

For assistance in obtaining an internship contact the program at

Applications will be reviewed by the Program Director and program staff. Files are evaluated based on GPA, letters of recommendation, writing ability, and extra-curricular activities. Acceptance into the program will be determined on a rolling basis and decisions about financial assistance will be announced in November for spring semester and March or early April for summer.

Students from other CSU campuses should consult with their campus representative.  Program staff will work with your campus representative to evaluate your application.




Internship Opportunities

Opportunities for Students

There are many nonprofits, cultural centers, advocacy groups, businesses, political organizations, lobby firms, think tanks, and other organizations that offer internships. Opportunities are limited only by your imagination!  We strongly encourage students to identify potential areas of interest and possible internship sites or organizations before applying, and to discuss their internship interests with an advisor in the Cal State DC Program.


Students interested in a DC internship should:

  • Attend an information session and application workshop
  • Apply online via the CSUF Study Abroad application portal
  • Meet with a Cal State DC advisor and your major advisor to complete the Cal State DC advising worksheet; submit the worksheet as an attachment to your online application
  • Develop a list of internships that interest you
  • Check internship application due dates
  • Draft a cover letter, resume, and obtain letters of recommendation
  • Submit applications to internship offices


Through the work of many at CSUF and the support of our alumni network here and in Washington, we have developed relationships with a number of internship offices. CSU Fullerton students who are interested in exploring these opportunities should contact the Cal State DC office at to discuss such opportunities. Click here to see Internship Opportunities.


Opportunities in Congressional Offices

Applications and information about Congressional internships are available at the web pages of each individual member. Senate web sites can be found at and U.S. House web sites can be found at Members of Congress prefer students from their districts but do take students from all over the country, with no party affiliation, and even students from the other party. If you have questions about applying contact the internship coordinator for that office or the Cal State DC office.


Examples of past Internships by College

The Arts

  • Ford's Theatre
  • Sirius Satellite Radio
  • Kennedy Performing Arts Center
  • PBS & NPR

Business and Economics

  • Import/Export Bank
  • NPR Finance
  • Center for Economic Justice


  • Fox News DC
  • CNN
  • National Geographic
  • Washington Post


  • U.S. Department of Education
  • White House Initiative for Hispanic Excellence in Education
  • Achieving the Dream

Engineering & Computer Science

  • NASA
  • Imagine One Technology and Management
  • Aerospace Industries Association

Health and Human Development

  • American Red Cross
  • The One Campaign
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Humanities & Social Sciences

  • National Coalition for the Homeless
  • U.S. Congress
  • Secret Service
  • Smithsonian Museum

Natural Science & Mathematics

  • Earth Day Network
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration



Classes in Washington, D.C.

Cal State DC Classes Group Photo


students in DC

Through our program students will earn college credit on site in Washington, DC from courses taught and supervised by CSU faculty. These courses are designed to help students get the most out of their experiences while still progressing towards graduation. In the Spring Semester, students must enroll in 12 units, which include 6 internship units and two specially designed upper division courses that incorporate the culture, history, and professional networks available only in DC.  Students in the summer program enroll in 6 units, including 3 units of internship. 

Prior to finalizing their participation in the program, students must meet with their major advisor to discuss whether and how Cal State DC courses can be used to meet major requirements.  All students may use the Cal State DC courses as general electives to meet the 120 unit requirement for a bachelor’s degree.  (Graduate students will be enrolled in a section of HUM 599 instead of POSC 322.)


Spring Courses

HUM 495: Internship
POSC 498: Internship
POSC 322: Leadership for Public Service (GE D.5)
POSC 402: Cal State DC


Summer Courses

POSC 498: Internship
POSC 402: Cal State DC


 "The best feature of working in DC was the variety of tasks I was given. There was hardly a dull moment on the job and I would rarely end up doing the same thing twice. My internship far exceeded the expectations I had and I would not have changed a thing about it."


Congratulations to our 2018 Summer Cal State DC Residential Faculty:

  • Professor Volker Janssen
  • Professor Rob Castro
  • Professor Kathryn Buechel







Housing for Cal State DC Group Shot

Short term housing is an expensive proposition in Washington, D.C.  Our program has negotiated group discount rates to help offset the cost for students participating in Cal State DC. In addition, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences subsidizes the cost of housing to keep it as low as possible.  It is important to us that as many students as possible have the opportunity to intern in DC!

Student housing is contracted through an organization that provides housing for interns from all over the country and all over the world.  You will be housed with other Cal State students and be able to enjoy special networking events sponsored by the housing agency and will include people from various career paths in DC.  The residential experience of living with and near interns from many different schools adds to the overall DC Internship experience.

We negotiate a contract with the WISH Housing offices which has housing available for reasonable prices and in convenient locations close to transportation, nightlife, and work locations for where many of you will intern.  



Information for Students at Other CSU Campuses

Throughout the history of the program, Cal State Fullerton has welcomed students from other Cal State campuses into the program and we work with people on your campus to ensure a smooth transition of academic units and financial assistance to help students participate in this life changing experience.

Students from other campuses should contact the Program Director and their campus representative.  Applications will be evaluated by the program staff and by your campus representative.  If you do not see a representative from your campus listed below, please contact the program so we can get in touch with the appropriate person from your campus.

Sonoma State University

Professor David S. McCuan

CSU Los Angeles

Professor Taylor Dark

CSU Dominguez Hills

Dean Mitch Avila


CSU San Marcos

Leo Malena

CSU Chico

Professor Diana Dwyre





Support the Cal State DC Scholars Program

Cal State DC Support Friends of the Program

CSU Fullerton's Cal State DC program is not possible without the support of many friends of the program. The often life-changing opportunity such as this is invaluable to our students and click here to go to a secure giving siteOpens in new window .

Gift Opportunities

Gift opportunities are available for individuals, corporations, or organizations interested in supporting students participating in the CSUF D.C. Internship Program. The average cost per student to attend the program is around $5000. Financial support will be used for housing, course registration, travel or other program expenses. Gifts of any amount are appreciated and can be awarded to students accepted into the program. Named scholarship opportunities are available for donors making a four year commitment of $10,000 or more, $2500 per year for four years.

For additional information about supporting the D.C. Internship program, please contact Alina Mircea-Trotz, Associate Director of Development for the College of Humanities & Social Sciences at (657) 278-2559 or





Owen Holmes, Director


Dr. Volker Janssen, Faculty Director Spring 2018


Dr. Rob Castro, Faculty Director Summer 2018


Program Email


Jaycee Cover, HSS Experiential Learning Specialist



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