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About the Washington Center

Started in 2001, the Washington Center partners with faculty from departments and schools across William & Mary to offer high-impact learning experiences for students in all majors. Among the diverse topics offered are government, policy, culture, business, education, and more. Since its inception, the Center has grown to become W&M’s Campus in the City, running Study in D.C. academic opportunities for 350+ undergraduate students year-round, with a growing scholarship fund to support them:

  • D.C. Semester Programan interdisciplinary opportunity with an internship based on students’ interests, runs each fall and spring semester
  • D.C. Winter Seminars: an intensive 10-day opportunity between semesters in January
  • D.C. Summer Institutesan intensive opportunity composed of accelerated classes and a ten-week internship over summer break
  • D.C. Summer Session: a distinct hybrid learning experience featuring class speakers for a week in D.C.
  • Global Scholars Programa unique, cohort-based experiential learning opportunity that cultivates creative thinkers and prepares them to become leaders in global policy and research roles in government, non-profit, and private sectors.

Study in D.C. opportunities feature connections with W&M’s robust D.C.-area alumni network. These committed alumni offer students a chance to learn directly from topic-specific experts and practitioners in the field. Alumni also serve as mentors, counseling students in a one-on-one setting as they prepare to take their experiences to life beyond W&M.  The small Center team offers individualized support to each student who comes through the door, with room for 450+ in an academic year.  Students have a personal relationship with the staff and faculty in D.C., which enhances the quality of the overall student experience.

With a focus on diversity and inclusion, the Center is raising more funds each year for its Study in D.C. Scholarship Fund so that all students who want to learn in D.C., are afforded the opportunity. For 2022-2023 alone, the scholarship fund awarded $153,900 in student scholarships. We are hoping to give more in the subsequent years with the help of an Advisory Board.  In partnership with this Board and University Advancement, the Center is planning to continue bringing D.C.-area alumni together to more cohesively support one another and our growing student body. 

Together with many partners, the Center prepares students for life after W&M and provides a home for the entire W&M family. 

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Center Diversity Statement

A guiding principle of the Center is the creation of opportunities that are available and accessible for all members of the W&M community.  Driven by our conscience, our responsibility as employees of W&M and the Commonwealth of Virginia, and by our respect for the laws of the District of Columbia, we strive to foster diversity within our community of students, staff, faculty, alumni, and families.   We aim to create an open and affirming environment that is welcoming to people of all backgrounds, perspectives, and identities. We affirm our support for all community members regardless of age, race, ethnicity, nationality, documentation status, range of abilities, neurotype, sexual orientation, sex, gender identity, financial means, faith, or political perspective. We are dedicated to ensuring that the Center is a welcoming, safe, comfortable, and respectful home away from home for the diverse community we support.