SPIA students are eligible to participate in any study abroad or exchange program sponsored by UGA, other USG institutions, or approved by UGA’s Office of International Education. Many programs offer political science and/or international affairs courses.

Information for Students

SPIA Advisor


The Office of U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and the School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA) at the University of Georgia offer SPIA undergraduate and graduate students opportunities for applied and academic study in Washington, D.C. via the Public Policy Fellowship.

A Fellow is selected each fall and spring term to work for Senator Isakson’s legislative staff in Washington, D.C. Specifically, she/he is assigned to one of Senator Isakson’s five legislative teams that help Senator Isakson prepare for votes, constituent meetings and hearings on that team’s set of issues as well as respond to constituent calls and mail on those issues. The Senator’s five legislative teams include a foreign relations/trade/military/veterans team, a finance/tax/budget team, a labor/pensions team, a health care team, and a judicial/agriculture/education/transportation team.
The Fellow’s tasks in support of the legislative team to which they are assigned may include the following:

• Research public policy topics using the Library of Congress and other Senate resources.
• Drafting letters in response to constituent mail on the team’s issues.
• Assist in the preparation of background papers for the Senator’s meetings and Congressional hearings on the team’s issues.
• Attend Congressional hearings on the team’s issues and prepare a summary of the highlights.
• Analyze the major state or national events that impact U.S. policy on the team’s issues.
• Participate in briefings on public policy issues at universities and think tanks.
• Meet with constituents, on behalf of Senator Isakson, to discuss their concerns on the issues handled by the legislative team.

In addition to a taxable stipend of $1,500 per month (up to $6,000 total, minus income taxes), the Fellow pursues academic credit under the supervision of a SPIA faculty member. This academic component compliments and enhances the applied learning of the Fellowship.
In order to apply, students should be 21 years of age by the start of the Fellowship and submit an application portfolio including:

The SPIA-Senatorial Fellowship Application Form
• A letter of application
• A personal resume
• An official academic transcript (obtainable from the Office of the Registrar)
• A list of three references (at least two of which should be academic)

Applicant’s portfolios should be completed no later than October 1st for spring to:

Office of the Dean
c/o SPIA Senatorial Public Policy Fellowship Selection Committee
School of Public and International Affairs
The University of Georgia
204 Candler Hall


The African Studies Institute is offering a new class under the Critical Issues in Contemporary Africa course number AFST 4200/6200 which will give students credit for preparing for the Annual Southeast Model African Union meeting in November.  The course is being offered by Dr. Ojo, Director of the African Studies Institute, TR 3:30-4:45 (call numbers 93834/93844).  This is an excellent opportunity for students to take the role of the leaders of an African country in dialogue with other representatives of other nations on the continent.  Highly recommended for both undergraduate and graduate students in History or Political Science or International Affairs or International Agriculture or Social Science Education.  Some of the students in this course will have the opportunity to attend the SE Model African Union meeting.  Please contact Dr. Ojo for additional information or pre-requisite overrides.

Note also that there is a second AFST 4200/6200 Critical Issues in Contemporary Africa class being offered this Fall by Dr. Whitney.  This class is the Globalization and Traditional Cultures course and will meet TR from 2-3:15 (call numbers 86650/93841) in room 507 Journalism.  This is a student centered class where the students decide on the globalization topics and traditional cultures that are of interest to them.  Highly recommended for students in Anthropology, Sociology, History, International Business, International Affairs, or Ecology, or International Agriculture.

There is also a 1 hour Africa Seminar (AFST 4950, call number 93742) which will meet on Wednesday at 12:20.  This is a S/U seminar that will cover a wide range of topics, including attending some of the APERO talks and some videos about Africa.  This seminar is open to students at all levels (Freshmen thru Seniors) with an interest in Africa.

Dr. Sandra E. Whitney
Adj. Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Geology
African Studies Institute
University of Georgia

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