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Experiential Learning

Experience innovation in the classroom and beyond.

With opportunities to intern year-round, hands-on projects and faculty working in the field, our students complete more than the typical summer internship — both in the classroom and in the field.

Situated ideally between Washington D.C. and the state capital Annapolis, we offer direct access to federal, state, local and even international policy experiences. In the classroom, our faculty are implementing innovative methods of teaching and engaging students. And, career services is here to support you every step of your journey, from landing your first internship to finding the right first job.

What is experiential learning?

Experiential learning makes the most of the University's prime location to offer students opportunities real-world experiences through hands-on internships, courses and projects:

  • Our career services staff help students find and apply to internships that match their career interests. Many of our students complete not just one internship, but multiple, throughout their program.
  • Students have the opportunity to take part in courses that combine innovative teaching styles with doing good and changemaking. Find a sample of courses below that allow students to develop real solutions.
  • Through the year-long capstone project, our MPP students take what they are learning in the classroom and help clients solve real-world policy problems. Our faculty and staff help to match students with clients to ensure the partnership provides an informative and mutually-beneficial experience.

Undergraduate's Internship Provides Insight into Policy World

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Anjali Kalaria Turns Passion and Experience in Graduate Project Course into Career

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2019 Internship and Employment Report

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Explore Our Faculty

Courses You Might be Interested In

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3 Credit(s)

A team-based, highly interactive and dynamic course that provides an opportunity for students to generate solutions to a wide range of problems facing many communities today. Students in the iGIVE Program will deepen their understanding of entrepreneurship and innovation practices by creating and implementing projects or ventures that address an issue of their choosing while learning topics such as communications, project management, teamwork, leadership, fundraising, project sustainability and next steps in social change. Restricted to students in the iGive program.
Schedule of Classes

Faculty: Patricia Bory
3 Credit(s)

Introduces students to the concept of social innovation while exploring the many mechanisms for achieving social impact. It is team-based, highly interactive and dynamic, and provides an opportunity for students to generate solutions to a wide range of problems facing many communities today. Deepens the students understanding of entrepreneurship and innovation practices by guiding them through the creation and implementation process as applied to a project idea of their choice.
Schedule of Classes

3 Credit(s)

Today, philanthropic and nonprofit organizations play significant roles in shaping how public policy gets developed and implemented, as well as how change occurs in society. This course will define philanthropy as an exploration of how one develops a vision of the public good and then how a person or group can deploy resources to achieve a positive and lasting impact. During the semester, the class will go through the challenging and exciting process of ultimately granting approximately $7,500 to an organization that we believe can use these resources to achieve an impact on an issue of international significance. Our class grant deliberations and decisions will ultimately lead us to confront, question, and sharpen our philanthropic values, decisions and leadership skills.
Schedule of Classes

Faculty: Angela Bies
3 Credit(s)

Public policy students will take the skills and knowledge gained through their curriculum and apply them through their senior capstone course. Students will work in teams on problems and issues presented by outside clients, with guidance from faculty facilitators and interaction with the clients. Each team will work with the client to address a particular problem and produce a mutually agreed upon outcome. These hands on projects will advance students' understanding of the analytical, leadership, communication and problem solving skills necessary to address today's policy problems while allowing them to gain professional level experience that could contribute to their success in their post UMD endeavors. The course will conclude with an event that allows all teams to present their findings and outcomes to their client while being evaluated by faculty and public policy professionals. Restricted to students who have earned a minimum of 90 credits. Permission required.
Schedule of Classes

Prerequisite(s): PLCY306