Politics, Public Policy & Law Track

The late Tip O'Neill, Boston congressman and speaker of the US House of Representatives, was fond of saying that all politics is local—and there is no more interesting mix of local, state, and national politics than in Boston. As the urban hub of the metropolitan region and as the state capital of Massachusetts, Boston plays a major role in local and state politics. It is also the center of federal government for New England, home to numerous federal agencies, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, and the First District of the Federal Reserve.

Through courses in areas such as international economics, public policy, political analysis and activism, international relations, and diplomacy, you'll prepare for internships at government agencies, think tanks, lobbying organizations, and PR firms, among others.

"This internship experience helped me understand the inner workings of a non-profit, as well as the responsibilities of an elected official. I also made a lot of fantastic contacts at the State House, which will no doubt help me in trying to get a job in the future."
Haley Weinreich, Wheelock College
Intern, MassVOTE

Summer 1: The Academic Phase
(May 19 - June 26, 2015)

You'll spend your first six weeks of the Summer Study Internship Program taking two 4-credit courses chosen from offerings in politics and public policy.

Choose Two:

  • CAS PH 155 Politics and Philosophy

    Introduces major themes and questions in political philosophy. Focuses on modern European Enlightenment, but also examines contemporary and classic authors. Cultivates philosophical analysis and argumentation by delving into issues of contemporary relevance. Carries CAS humanities division credit. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent T, W, R 1:00 PM-3:30 PM Duclos CAS B27
  • CAS PH 160 Reasoning and Argumentation

    A systematic study of the principles of both deductive and informal reasoning, with an emphasis on reasoning and argumentation in ordinary discourse and their strategies. Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent M, T, R 1:00 PM-3:30 PM Sosna FLR 123
  • CAS PO 111 Introduction to American Politics

    Undergraduate core course. Study of the national political structure; emphasis on Congress, the executive, administrative agencies, and the judiciary. Relations between formal institutions, parties, and interest groups. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent T, R 6:00 PM-9:30 PM Maguire CAS B06B
  • CAS PO 141 Introduction to Public Policy

    Undergraduate core course. Analysis of several issue areas: civil rights, school desegregation, welfare and social policy, education and urban housing, energy, and the environment. Characteristics of policy systems in each issue area are analyzed to identify factors which may affect the content and implementation of public policies. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent T, R 1:00 PM-4:30 PM Boone SOC B61
  • CAS PO 378 International Human Rights

    Studies the growing international influence on politics of human rights principles, documents, and organizations, drawing especially on African cases such as Congo, Zimbabwe, and Sudan. Topics include universality vs. cultural relativism, individual vs. group rights, and issues in human rights enforcement. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent M, W 1:00 PM-4:30 PM Longman CAS 233
  • CAS PO 508 The Judiciary and Civil Liberties

    First Amendment rights of speech, press, assembly, religion; rights of defendants in criminal cases; and the constitutional protection of racial minorities. Supreme Court decision-making processes and modes of compliance with its decisions are also considered. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent T, R 1:00 PM-4:30 PM Glick CAS B14
  • CAS SO 207 Sociology of Race and Ethnicity

    Social definition of race and ethnicity. The adjustment of different ethnic groups and their impact upon U.S. social life. How prejudice and discrimination create class identities and how caste relations have affected patterns of integration during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent M, W 6:00 PM-9:30 PM Edwards AAS 102
  • COM JO 525 Media Law and Ethics

    An examination of the many ethical issues and dilemmas that face reporters, editors, and producers, and how to resolve them with professional integrity. Danger of actions for contempt or defamation, laws of copyright, and intellectual property. 4 cr.

    Prereq: Required of all journalism majors. Recommended to be taken after COM JO357.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent M, T, W 1:30 PM-4:00 PM Lehr CAS 223
  • MET CJ 209 Crime and Delinquency

    Crime is a complex social phenomena that harms individuals and society at large. This course provides a foundation for understanding criminal behavior. It emphasizes critical analysis of theories of crime causation from a variety of perspectives and their implications for public policy. The course applies theories to a range of crime types and problems, from violence to economic-based crimes. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent M, W 6:00 PM-9:30 PM Gustafson CAS 204A
  • MET CJ 510 Special Topics in Criminal Justice

    Topics for Summer 2015: Summer 1: A1 Race, Crime, & Justice; Summer 2: B1 Special Populations in Corrections. 4 cr.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent M, W 6:00 PM-9:30 PM Iwama FLR 123
  • SMG LA 245 Introduction to Law

    Prereq: (SMG SM 131) or sophomore standing. Sophomore requirement. Provides a broad overview of the American judicial system and fundamental legal issues. Examines dispute resolution, torts, contracts, criminal law, business organizations, employment law, intellectual property, and international law. The goal is to understand not only the basic rules of law but also the underlying social policies and ethical dilemmas. 4 cr.

    Prereq: SMG SM131 or sophomore standing.

    Section Type Days Times Instructor Location
    SA1 Independent T, R 9:00 AM-12:30 PM Fazendeiro SMG 312
    SA2 Independent M, W 9:00 AM-12:30 PM Chang SMG 304

Summer 2: The Internship Phase
(July 6 - August 14, 2015)

For the second six weeks of the program, you'll be placed as an intern in a Boston-area organization or business that matches your interests and experience. You should expect to work five days a week for a minimum of 35 hours. Most internships are unpaid.

Politics, Public Policy & Law Internship Opportunities

Internship placement opportunities are available at state, local, and federal government agencies; legal centers and law organizations; international agencies and organizations; think tanks; lobbying organizations and political action groups; and political parties.

Internship Placement

  • Internship placement for 35 hours a week
  • Internship matches are based on your interests, abilities, and experience
  • All internship sites are accessible by public transportation
  • Visit our Placement Process page for additional information

Summer Study Internship Course
(May 22 - August 14, 2015)

The Summer Study Internship Program's 2-credit Internship Course meets on Friday mornings throughout Summer 1 and two evenings in Summer 2. The course explores links between your academic tracks and your on-site professional experience, and provides support and guidance as you prepare for your placement.

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