Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon Institute for Strategy & Technology

CMU's Home for Political Science and International Relations

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Before You Go

Students who are admitted to the CMU/WSP will be enrolled in 84-215 Tomorrow’s Professionals in the mini semester directly preceding their time in DC. This 3-unit (pass/no pass) seminar is designed to facilitate students’ deliberate thinking about professionalism, so that they can: begin to practice it upon entry into their respective internships and avoid decisions or behaviors that could hamper their success, build their unique brands, identify opportunities to excel, and ensure overall excellence in their careers. Throughout the seminar, we will discuss professional conduct, leadership, teamwork, interview techniques and strategies for success. We will discuss real-time and simulated workplace challenges, and problem-solve as a group to develop meaningful, professional resolutions to difficult workplace scenarios. Being prepared for such scenarios, and responding intentionally to challenges can make or break a career.  

Professionalism is a lifelong skill. The goal of this seminar is to provide students with the necessary tools to begin building their professional careers, and so that they have a set of skills to rely on as they grow within their careers. Given the right preparation and tool kit—students that practice professionalism will see their careers catapulted forward and doors open indefinitely.  

While in Washington

During the semester in Washington, DC, students earn 48-units, taking a combination of mini and full semester courses. Students take classes three evenings per week. Each class meets only once per week. All courses are taught by Carnegie Mellon Institute for Strategy and Technology faculty and all classes are held in the CMU/WSP classrooms on Capitol Hill. The academic program consists of the following:

I. 84-360 Internship Seminar (24 units)

Full semester course, plus 25-30 hours per week internship

II. Seminar on Public Policy Research, Writing, and Implementation (12 units)

Full semester course. Options vary by semester. Students enroll in one course from the following list:

  • 84-336 Implementing Public Policy: From Good Idea to Reality (spring)
  • 84-339 Seminar in Public Policy Research (fall)

III. Seminars on American Politics, Governance, Institutions, and Law (12 units)

Students enroll in one course in each mini during the semester they are in Washington, DC, for a total of 2 seminars and 12 units. 

  • 84-332 Contemporary US Constitutional Law Issues (6 units)
  • 84-338 Analysis of US Presidential Powers (6 units)