During their eight weeks in Washington, students will intern with governmental agencies, think tanks, or nonprofit organizations, where they will assist with analysis of policy questions and formulation of policy options regarding science and technology policy and ethics.
The purpose of the program is to draw on what you have learned at Duke and elsewhere to contribute to and engage in the process of creating national science policy. We expect students to bring knowledge gained back to Duke in order to inform and enrich their academic and service commitments. The Duke Initiative for Science & Society has a long-standing commitment to exploring the connections between science and technology and the policy-making process. The DukeEngage Washington program complements their undergraduate offerings at Duke, which includes the prestigious Huang Fellows program and Science & Society Certificate.
The goal of the program is to engage Duke undergraduates with opportunities to participate in experiential learning in the federal policy making process, with a specific focus on the sciences and the unique challenges that work in this niche presents, including effective science communication. During the eight weeks in Washington, the program hopes to foster an ethic of service and civic participation in students.
By the program’s end students should be able to:
Organizations that might host DukeEngage students include:
Examples of projects that student groups have carried out include:
The program directors work with community partners to arrange student placements after students are notified of their acceptance into this program. Students with specific placement ideas should raise those in their DukeEngage interview. In applying for this program, students must understand that placement could be at any one of the community partner organizations, or others that later become available. In sum, we will work hard to match student interest to placement site need; it is a complicated process and students need to be aware that: (1) some placements may require a separate application process or further interviews, and (2) final decisions will be made by the program directors, not by students.
This DukeEngage program is connected to the Undergraduate Certificate in Science and Society coursework and class offerings.
Visit the official DukeEngage in Washington DC page for more information about the program, including what skills and personal qualities are necessary to participate.
Program Dates: May 25-July 23
(Dates subject to change up until departure.)
Addressing national policy-making in the sciences.
Thomas Williams, J.D./M.B.E.,
Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Duke Initiative for Science & Society, where he was the was the founding director of the Science Policy tracking project and teaches in the Masters in Bioethics and Science Policy program. His independent research assesses the property interests individuals hold in their own bodies.
Nita Farahany, Ph.D./J.D.,
Director of the Duke Initiative for Science & Society, Professor of Law & Philosophy
Michael B. Waitzkin J.D./L.L.M.,
Deputy Director of Duke Initiative for Science & Society, Senior Lecturing Fellow