Since 1976, the American Studies Program has served as an experiential learning laboratory for students committed to connecting their faith to public affairs. Nearly 500 of American Studies Program’s 3,000+ alumni have returned to work in the DC metro area in a variety of professional fields—private and public, for-profit and nonprofit. Each student enrolls in the program’s two practicum courses: Internship and Professional Development Practicum course. In addition, students apply to either the Public Policy track or the Strategic Communication track. ASP students earn 15–16 semester hours of credit. See bestsemester.com for details.
The Public Policy track equips and supports students in their analysis of a pressing public policy issue. Each student produces original research by engaging area experts and practitioners off-site and in the classroom as they investigate the local, national, and global factors that influence policy-making in Washington, D.C.
The Strategic Communication track engages Washington, D.C.-based organizations and communication professionals to explore the role of strategic communication in achieving organizational goals. Field-work activities explore current best practices in communicating critical organizational messages to key internal and external constituents and stakeholders. Students compare how different types of organizations set strategic direction, develop and evaluate messages, choose appropriate communication channels and tactics and measure output and impact outcomes.