Community of Scholars Program Details

Students in the Community of Scholars program will participate in a hybrid format in which they attend classes on the AU campus for two weeks, followed by a week at home for asynchronous learning during which they remain engaged with their professor and complete a final paper or project. During the two weeks on campus, students attend class from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Monday through Friday. After lunch, students will participate in afternoon activities and visit government organizations and agencies. Readings and assignments will be available via AU's Canvas platform. Students will live in AU dorms and eat in AU’s campus dining facilities. Upon returning home, students will remain in contact with their professor and peers for an additional week of asynchronous instruction and a final assignment. Although most students live on campus during the two weeks, commuter students are welcome and will be provided lunch every day and included in many evening activities. 

Summer 2024

Applications for Summer 2024 are open.


Program Benefits

During this intensive summer program, students will:

  • Pursue your academic interests in International Relations
  • Earn three college credits
  • Explore international institutions in Washington, DC
  • Learn about international careers
  • Meet other students who are passionate about creating meaningful change in the world

Course Offerings

Students choose one of the following course options.

Difference, particularly cultural difference, is the source of many conflicts in international relations. This course will explore conceptual components and theories of conflict, culture, and conflict resolution—with a special focus on the role that culture plays in both starting and resolving conflicts. An in-depth examination of contemporary international conflicts will be used as illustrative case-studies. The class will then bridge the gap between interpersonal, group, and international conflicts by exploring strategies of conflict resolution and cross-cultural understanding.

Climate change and other environmental hazards present humanity with profound challenges. Fundamental to solving these challenges is an awareness that human well-being rests on two essential factors—a healthy planet and healthy individuals. In this course, we will explore the interconnectedness of environmental sustainability and global health. The course will explore the root causes and the social, political, economic, cultural, and ecological dimensions of both these areas. This interdisciplinary course introduces students to urgent environmental and health dilemmas with an eye towards successful strategies of response. Examples of lasting solutions do exist, and we will explore what common qualities are necessary to support positive change.

How does the U.S. government confront dictators, maintain allies, and protect the nation from international threats to national security? This course will introduce the major departments, agencies, and actors within the government involved in foreign policy and national security. It will explore how they operate in the new strategic environment by considering major threats and issues facing the United States today, from terrorists to rogue states to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. The course will also address the conflicting goals, agendas, and trade-offs present in any foreign and national security policy. Debating the range of policy options, students will explore how the U.S. might best act to enhance U.S. national security and international position.

Tuition & Fees

Students are encouraged to seek out and apply independently for private scholarships that may be awarded by local organizations such as businesses, churches, and civic groups.


  • Three college credits 
  • Transportation to government agencies and other sites
  • Classroom materials
  • Access to AU's library and other AU campus resources


  • Dormitory housing in doubles or triples in an AU dormitory
  • Meals (Breakfast, lunch, and dinner)
  • Evening and weekend activities
  • Wi-Fi Access
  • Round-the-clock dormitory staffing with controlled building access
  • Linens provided