Discover the Academies Experience

Curious about what it's like to attend The Academies? Our Academies Experience packet gives an inside look into how a week at the Academies will launch you to new heights.

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*Please note that we are no longer accepting SPA applications for the summer of 2019!

The Summer Politics Academy will cover topics like American News Media, Free Speech, American Education Policy, Constitutional Law, The Affordable Care Act and the 2018 Midterm Elections. These areas within government are constantly at the forefront of public debate and involve the understanding of the three branches of government. This week long summer program will equip you with the analytical tools to understand and criticize these areas of politics. The goal is for students to learn how political scientists address the important issues of our time and how public officials implement policy in response. Students will leave this program with a unified and challenging intellectual experience in the study of politics and will have the tools to engage in these political issues.

Become a leader.
Brainstorm innovative policy.

The SPA Model


We give you access to unparalleled resources, including speakers/professors from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, former policy influencers and distinguished Harvard Undergraduates with a demonstrated interest and talent in politics. We hope this inspires you. Learn more about our amazing lineup of speakers here.


The core of SPA lies in learning from your peers. Our model focuses on peer-to-peer, hands-on learning that focuses on immersive classroom debate and group activities. At SPA, you will never be told what to think, but we will give you the resources with which you can make foster your own opinions. By engaging you, we hope to help you grow as an intellectual. Learn more about our program here.

Find Your Passion in Politics

SPA will be taught in a combination of lectures, forums, sections and a week-long project. Lectures are taught by speakers who are renown in the field of politics and will introduce students to the broader themes in politics. In section participants will have an opportunity to discuss the material covered in lecture with the help of a Harvard student. This will provide students with a good idea of what to expect in a college classroom. Students will also be doing a lot of hands-on work through their project groups. Before arriving students will be asked to indicate an area of interest within the broader realm of politics and get assigned to project groups with students who indicated similar interests. SPA will provide students with a hands-on experience through workshops and a weeklong project that culminates in the final SPA Summit. The Summer Politics Academy at Harvard will introduce students to key concepts in politics, government and international relations. You will study a broad array of areas within the realm of politics including, law, urban-planning, government structure and public policy. At SPA you will be challenged to ask and find answers to some of the most difficult political questions of our time. Is democracy really the best political system? How do we come up with the “best” macroeconomic policy?  How do you run a successful campaign? The most important takeaway from SPA will be a thorough understanding of the complexities that surround political power and public administration and a grasp on how one goes about navigating it.

2019 Program Dates

July 8th – 12th (M-F)
July 22nd – 26th (M-F)
August 5th – 9th (M-F)
Session VI
Session I
Session II
Session III


Program tuition covers one week of instruction, lunch, and snacks. Our program grants exclusive access to the people and unmatched resources at Harvard.

Please note that this tuition does not include housing for the students. Each student must find their own accommodations. Tuition for a five-day session of the Summer Politics Academy: $795.

Financial aid is offered on a case-by-case basis. To reach out regarding financial aid, please contact us at There are other opportunities available to reduce the cost of tuition. In addition to the 10% sibling discount, we also offer a referral program where if someone you refer registers for the program, you will receive a percentage off the final tuition payment; the more people who register, the greater your discount. The tuition deadline for all sessions is June 12th. Please contact us at if you need to make other payment arrangements

The Summer 2019 Application is open!

Regular Application Due
May 3rd, 2019

Extended Deadline
May 17th, 2019