"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

"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

"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

"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 intellectuals. 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

“This program was not simply about learning from great works. It’s about the people you meet, the connections you make, and the friendships that will last a lifetime.”
-Anna Memoli

"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

The Hudson Political Studies Fellowship includes a deep reading of political theory and applies the lessons learned from these great texts to real, present-day political issues. At a time when it is easy to have an opinion on just about anything, the program challenged me to appreciate just how difficult the questions are that face policymakers. Many programs claim to be non-partisan, Hudson Political Studies genuinely is, encouraging debate from individuals across the political spectrum.
--Tom Samuels

“From gaining invaluable knowledge to simulating political crises in workshops, or even forging life-long friendships, the Hudson Institute Political Studies program is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and an adventure, both intellectually and personally.
-Edouard Fox

“Hudson Institute Political Studies showed me how badly we need real ideas and thought in politics, law, policymaking, and even in venture-capital—and then gave me the forum to develop those ideas.”
-Gidon Halbfinger

“Participating in the Hudson Institute’s Political Studies Program stands among the most engaging and enriching opportunities I have received. The program was rigorous and immersive, holding participants accountable to high standards in our writing, contributions to class discussion and performance during policy workshops. Hudson surpassed my expectations of what a summer academic program could achieve.”
-Eamonn Bellin

“My summer at the Hudson Institute Political Studies program profoundly enhanced the education I received in college. The seminars were rigorous, but perhaps more influential was my relationships with other fellows and the intellectual environment of the program. Conversations almost always continued after seminars, and I learned a great deal from my peers and their life experiences.”
-Andrew Ciacci

“The Hudson Institute Political Studies Fellowship provides the best opportunity available to engage with great works and understand their relevance in the modern world today. If you’re interested in political science, this program is a great way to give yourself a strong foundation which can be applied to any career field.”
-Noah Riley

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 2019 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.

Learn More

Summer Fellowship

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

Jun 18 - Jun 22 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 25 - Jun 29 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 02 - Jul 06 at Georgetown University

In the third week, we return to Plato’s Republic, with an assessment of the American regime in hand, to develop our understanding of justice and political life.  There Socrates constructs a “best city in speech” in order to understand justice in the human soul.  Why does he approach political founding through the question of the soul and its justice? Tracing the evolution of the model of the city through its progressive stages, we will examine how it leads to a political class structure and corresponding structure of the soul.  We will inquire, finally, into the status of this city in speech as a way to understand justice: is it meant to be a blueprint for political life, or on the contrary, a display of the psychology of political idealism and its dangers? What can we learn from Socrates’ founding of a regime in speech about actual political founding?

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

Jul 09 - Jul 13 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, Yuval Levin, John Sawicki and John P. Walters

Jul 16 - Jul 20 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 23 - Jul 27 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.