Inside Washington

Go inside the world of politics and policy.

Washington Connections

Inside Washington is a semester-long experience that provides participants with a deeper understanding of how politics drives policy in the nation’s capital. This program will introduce students to Washington’s key players. It will enable students to develop an understanding of the relationships between elected officials, government leaders, political parties, lobbyists, advocacy groups, and others tasked with getting things done in Washington. The students who take part in this program will also participate in several exciting opportunities to visit and network with professionals and Gettysburg alumni in Washington.

Students can expect:

  • Weekly sessions (in-person and virtual) with Gettysburg alumni who are Washington insiders. These sessions will focus on identifying and engaging on key issues that are affecting the 2022 election and how they may shape the competitive races that will decide the political party that is in power in the 118th Congress. These sessions will also allow students to gain historical context by comparing President Eisenhower’s relationship with Congress and the importance of the relationship between the Executive and Legislative Branches.
  • Immersive trips to Washington, D.C. that will expose students to government institutions, and the breadth of public service careers in politics, advocacy, lobbying, and other fields. Planned trips include a two-day visit over Reading Days to visit Congress and meet with experts; an election-night watch party with political analysts; and a networking event.
  • A midterm election project that will provide each student the opportunity to select and track a key competitive Congressional race in the fall 2022 midterm election.
  • An op-ed project that will allow students to analyze policy developments and practice writing for a public audience through Ike's Anvil, the Eisenhower Institute’s student policy blog.
  • Alumni mentorship opportunities that will help participants learn more about careers and think through how their academic work can translate to professional environments in politics, advocacy, lobbying, diplomacy, and other public service fields.

This program will highlight skills and experiences that prepare students for involvement in other Eisenhower Institute programs and possible careers in Washington, including civic engagement, networking, and professional writing. It is recommended for first-years and sophomores, though upper-class students new to the Eisenhower Institute are also welcome to apply.

Inside Washington will be led by a bipartisan team of Gettysburg College alumni: Ryan Woodward ’12, an experienced lobbyist and former Congressional aide, and Senate aide Jake Ecke ’18.


The following schedule provides a tentative outline of the program. We appreciate your flexibility as some changes to the schedule may be necessary as additional opportunities and conflicts arise. Attendance is required at all sessions below.

  • Friday, Sept. 30, 5:30-7 p.m. – Program Orientation and Overview of the Midterms (CUB 230)
  • Thursday, Oct. 6, 5:30-7 p.m. – Pre-Trip Prep Session
  • Oct. 9-11 – Reading Days Trip to Washington, D.C.
  • Monday, Oct. 17, 5:30-7 p.m. – Weekly Discussion with Prof. Michael Birkner
  • Monday, Oct. 24, 5:30-7 p.m. – Weekly Discussion
  • Tuesday, Oct. 25, 4-10 p.m. – D.C. Alumni Networking Event (event runs 5:30-8 p.m.)
  • Monday, Oct. 31, 5:30-7 p.m. – Weekly Discussion
  • Tuesday, Nov. 8, 4 p.m.-2 a.m. – D.C. Election Watch Party (event runs 6-12 p.m.)
  • Monday, Nov. 21, 5:30-7 p.m. – Election Post-Mortem: What Happened, Why, and What Does It Mean? (Virtual)