Check out the interview Greg Lebel, Director of  SIWP did on State of Belief about the Republican Presidential Election!


After completing the Native American Political Leadership Program in summer 2010, John Brooks, a recent graduate of Oklahoma State University, returned to Washington to intern with Congressman Tom Cole (R-OK) and member of the Chickasaw Nation.  John first met Congressman Cole at an NAPLP networking event while he was in the program. John took the opportunity to express his interest in interning with the Congressman’s office and it helped him secure an internship with Congressman Cole for this summer. While attending NAPLP in summer 2010, John interned with the Bureau of Indian Affairs Regulatory Affairs Division. After his summer internship on Capitol Hill, John will be attending The University of Tulsa Law School.  Of his time in NAPLP, John says, “The program was a great learning experience. It took the study of politics to a new level for me. I particularly enjoyed the political campaign assignment. It also opened a few really great doors for me in the world of National Politics. I was able to secure an internship in the House of Representatives due to my experience with this great program.”



Much like his fellow classmate, Jason Wilson, participant in the summer 2010 SIWP program returned to Washington after finishing his junior year at Susquehanna University. After completing the SIWP program, Jason hit the campaign trail, working for two Congressional campaigns during the 2010 cycle. This summer, Jason returned to Washington to complete two Congressional internships; one with Senator Lautenberg and one with Congressman Pallone. Of his time at SIWP, Jason said, “this program was really beneficial in a starting a career in politics.”

This week, the Semester in Washington Politics program welcomed 17 new students who came to Washington, DC from all across the country. Three of the 17 are students in the Native American Political Leadership Program. The summer students can anticipate meeting members of Congress, political pundits, and policy makers that impact Washington.



Jason Potteiger, an SIWP Summer 2007 Alum (pictured right) and a friend had the opportunity to have their picture taken with John Oliver, a comedian who is often featured on Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show”. John Oliver was filming a segment about Sarah Palin’s bus tour in Boston.

Michael Dittoe, a 2005 alum of SIWP is currently the Director of Communications for the Ohio House of Representatives. In his position, he serves as the chief point of contact for all press concerning Speaker Batchelder’s and the 58 Republican members of the House Majority Caucus. Dittoe also serves as the Senior Advisor to Speaker Batchelder. Prior to his position in the Ohio House of Representatives, Dittoe was the Executive Director of the Ohio House Republican Organizational Committee. The committee was responsible for running all 99 State House races for the Ohio House of Representatives in the 2010 cycle. Leading the committee, Dittoe and his staff regained a record number of seats for the Republicans in the Ohio House and thus regained the majority.

While a participant in SIWP, Michael interned with The Republican State Leadership Committee. Upon reflection about his time in SIWP, Dittoe said, “”Being selected to be a student in the SIWP program was both humbling and exciting.  There is no doubt in my mind that SIWP was a turning point for me and prepared me for the career I have today.  I am grateful to my professors and practicum leaders for leading excellent coursework and real-world projects that helped prepare all of us for the road ahead.  Anyone considering this program should do it – it will be one of the best decisions you ever make!”

Emily Amps Mora, a 2001 SIWP Alumna who interned with the Interfaith Alliance as a communications intern at SIWP is currently serving as Communications Director for Texas State Senator, Jose Rodriguez (D-El Paso). Emily has a wealth of knowledge and experience in politics and campaigning. She previously served as Regional Field Director for Tony Sanchez for Governor, Finance Director and Deputy Campaign Manager for former Congressman Chet Edwards, and Finance Director for the Texas HDCC (House Democratic Campaign Committee). Emily most recently served as Chief of Staff to Texas State Representative Chris Turner before her current post as Communications Director for State Senator Rodriguez.

Bethany Allen, a University of Maine graduate, attended the SIWP Program in Spring 2006. Bethany is currently a Legislative Aide for the House Republicans in the Maine State Legislature.  Prior to her position with the Maine State Legislature, Allen interned in the Bush White House, served as a Research Analyst with the Republican National Committee, and also worked at Eaton Peabody.

While attending SIWP, Allen interned with Kemp Partners, a strategic consulting and business development firm. Of SIWP, Bethany said, “Attending the Semester in Washington program was one of the best decisions I made in college. The program not only helped me find my first internship, but it provided a unique educational experience that I could not have gotten anywhere else-in Washington, DC!”

Semester in Washington Politics is delighted to announce that the initial effort to create the SIWP Alumni Scholarship Fund resulted in contributions and pledges totaling more than $3,200! On behalf of the staff of SIWP and  award recipients, we want to thank those alumni who have contributed or pledged funds and especially the Class Captains who were so instrumental in making this possible:

Tor Wallen, Steve Hildner, Laura Braden, Jayson Williams, Kit Brauer, Pierce Blue, Steve Atkiss, Danielle Gonzalez, Dominick Pangallo, Ryan Campbell, Tim Daly, Jon Monger, Kent Sopris, Francesca Gage, Lindsay Shore Hanson, Sean Floyd, Susie Dent, Alex Lebow, Cassie Surber, Matthew Janiszewski, Todd DeLorenzo, Samantha Galing Gaddy, Chris Weber, Ben Pickett, Joy Langley, Matthew Slutsky, Charlie Liebschutz, Allison Bringardner, Jason Potteiger, Gabe Sulkes, Michael Berman, and Jason Wilson

We are proud to announce the two recipients of the SIWP Alumni Scholarship for the Summer 2011 session:

Jessica Kemmerer from Kutztown University

Eleni Failla from Purdue University

President Obama spoke at the Jack Morton Auditorium at The George Washington University on Wednesday April 13th to address deficit reduction. This comes at a time when House Republicans have set forth a budget blueprint for the 2012 fiscal year. The President was previously on GW’s campus in 2009 when he held a “Moving America Forward” town hall meeting.