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Woodhouse Public Policy Fellows Discover Post-War Conservative Thought

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Applications for the 2024-25 Woodhouse Public Policy Fellowship are due on Wednesday, July 3. Visit TFAS.org/PPF for more information and to apply.


Fellows engage in a lively discussion during the winter retreat in Mecosta.

The newly revamped Woodhouse Public Policy Fellowship closed on a high note for the class of 2023-24 at TFAS Headquarters in Washington, D.C., this May. The cohort of 20 young professionals came together from congressional offices, think tanks, educational nonprofits and other prominent organizations in the area to connect with others working in public policy while building their understanding of fusionism.

From monthly evening speaker events to weekend retreats in Mecosta, Michigan and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Fellows deep dived into post-war conservative philosophy of fusionism and its relationship to both the American Founding and contemporary policy challenges. The group explored how thinkers like F.A. Hayek, Russell Kirk and Frank Meyer attempted to resolve the tensions between freedom and order in public policy when answering “What is conservatism?”

Through this fellowship, The Fund for American Studies has offered us an unparalleled opportunity to think seriously about the American project.” – Kayla Bartsch, PPF ’23

The cohort explored historic Philadelphia during the spring retreat.

Notable public policy experts, academic and political leaders including TFAS alumna Stephanie Slade, Novak ’16, of Reason, Matt Continetti, Novak ’08, of the American Enterprise Institute, Gary Gregg of the McConnell Center at University of Louisville, TFAS senior scholar Dr. Donald Devine and Dr. Samuel Gregg of the American Institute for Economic Research led thought provoking discussions during the monthly sessions and weekend retreats.

Kayla Bartsch, PPF ’23, a current William F. Buckley Jr. Fellow at National Review reflected on her positive experience during the closing ceremony as one of the keynote speakers.

Fellows gather during an academic session.

“Through this fellowship, The Fund for American Studies has offered us an unparalleled opportunity to think seriously about the American project,” said Bartsch. “And what a gift it has been to spend time with the best American minds — past and present.”

Throughout the closing ceremony, the cohort reminisced on the lively discussions, friendly debates and the bonds forged over the last nine months.

Shane Leary, PPF ’23, from Baron Public Affairs expressed his thankfulness to come together with a group of individuals who are passionate about preserving the United States.

“It brought together an excellent group if I may say, of talented, brilliant, young conservatives,” said Leary. “A group of people, with deep moral concern, who are willing to do the hard work to preserve this country, not only for future generations, but because, we owe it to our ancestors who worked so hard to preserve it for our sake.”

TFAS is grateful to Marilyn Woodhouse for her generosity with her recent one-million-dollar endowment which has forever touched the lives of these intellectual individuals. Her donation will continue to reach even more young courageous leaders in the years to come creating a brighter future for society.

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Woodhouse Public Policy Fellows Discover Post-War Conservative Thought

The newly revamped Woodhouse Public Policy Fellowship closed on a high note for the class of 2023-24 at TFAS Headquarters in Washington, D.C., this May.