Gateway Program


The Gateway Program is a semester-long experience for Iowa State University Political Science majors or minors who have obtained a politics-related internship in Washington, D.C. The Gateway Program aims to foster professional and academic development for ISU Political Science students and build a robust network of support and institutional knowledge as students prepare for their future careers. The Program includes:

  • Unique one-on-one mentorship experience with an ISU alumnus in Washington, D.C.
  • $1,000 cost-of-living stipend
  • Young-professional networking opportunities
  • Career planning with mentor and greater ISU alumni network
  • Eligibility for ISU academic credit

The program can be during fall, spring, or summer semester, with applications due at least one month before the intended program start date.

Sample Summer-Program Timeline

  • January–April: Students download, complete, and submit their application to the Gateway Program Review Committee.
  • April: Students will be selected by the Review Committee to participate in the Gateway Program.
  • April–May: Selected students are informed on or around the last week of April and paired with an ISU alumnus in their field of interest.
  • May–June: Students arrive in Washington, D.C. for Gateway Program orientation and to begin their internships.
  • June–August: Students undertake internships, meet with mentors, and take advantage of all the Gateway Program has to offer.
  • August: Program completion; students return to ISU as Gateway Program Ambassadors.

All Iowa State University Political Science majors and minors who obtain an internship in the Washington, D.C.-area are eligible to apply.

Please submit applications and any questions to

Internship Search Engines

All applicants to the Iowa State University Gateway Program must obtain an internship in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area in order to be eligible.

Title Link
Linkedin Link
Indeed Link
Idealist Link
Senate Employment Bulletin Link Link
Glassdoor Link
Intern Queen Link

Application Information

To apply, submit the following items to

  • Cover letter including your intended internship title, organization, start date, and supervisor
  • Résumé (1–2 pages)
  • References from 2 or 3 individuals who know you in an academic or professional capacity
  • Offer letter from your internship supervisor or internship organization
  • Unofficial transcripts
  • Anticipated class schedule for future semesters
  • Three essays addressing the following prompts:
    1. How will the Gateway program further your academic and career aspirations? (500-word limit)
    2. Pick a current event from a credible news source in your field of interest and provide policy recommendations to the U.S. government concerning the event (200-word limit)
    3. What do you predict will be the most pressing issue for the U.S. government (domestically or internationally) or the community impacted by your internship organization in the next 10 years? (200-word limit)