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Public Policy Fellowship


The TFAS Public Policy Fellowship is a year-long program designed to develop young leaders with a shared commitment to improving public policy.

Applications for the 2022-2023 Public Policy Fellowship are now closed.

Fellows celebrate the completion of the 2021-22 Public Policy Fellowship during the Closing Ceremony.

The curriculum for the 2022-23 TFAS Public Policy Fellowship will focus on the question, “What is conservatism?” Fellows will explore post-war conservative thought and how thinkers like F.A. Hayek, Russell Kirk and Frank Meyer attempted to resolve the tensions between freedom and order in public policy.  The program will place a particular emphasis on the post-war conservative philosophy of fusionism and its relationship to both the American Founding and contemporary policy challenges. The Fellowship runs from September 2022 to May 2023 and includes monthly evening sessions and two weekend retreats. Potential discussion topics include “The Constitution of Liberty,” Kirk’s ” The Conservative Mind,” William F. Buckley Jr. and the formation of National Review, “Conservative Constitutionalism,” and Röpke’s “Humane Economy.”

2017-18 Public Policy Fellow Emily Adamec meets with Fellowship alumni Jory Heckman and Samantha Summers at the 2017 Welcome Reception.

The goal of the Fellowship is to provide events that allow young professionals to foster strong connections with peers working in public policy while building an understanding of the principles of fusionism through deliberation and debate. Fellows will participate in academic discussion sessions while networking with key public policy leaders, academics and journalists.

The TFAS Public Policy Fellowship challenged me to find my voice. Surrounded as I am by brilliant peers, I know I must be prepared and speak well but I must also be open to having my mind changed. It has given me the confidence to engage with my peers in open and pleasant conversations about American political philosophy, public policy, and the future of the country. I have benefited immensely from this experience, and I am grateful.” – Colleen Harmon, 2020-21 Public Policy Fellow


2021-22 Fellows Emily Johnson, Madison Leblanc and Erica Lizza tour Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello during the spring retreat in Charlottesville.

The TFAS Public Policy Fellowship combines networking, professional development and academic discussions. The 2022-23 curriculum will include:

  • Monthly discussions in Washington, D.C., with public policy experts, academics and political leaders on topics fundamental to republican government.
  • A fall weekend retreat in Mecosta, Michigan, at the ancestral home of Russell Kirk to explore the American political tradition discussed in “The Conservative Mind” and Kirk’s other writings.
  • A spring weekend retreat in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on American national character, which examines the character of American citizenship at the time of the Founding and today and asks what can be done to renew a unified and spirited commitment to freedom and self-reliance.

I became more confident in participating in roundtable discussion on some of the most important and complicated issues facing our country today. Before the Fellowship, I had a more ‘I’ll leave it to the experts to decide’ mentality, but this program challenged me to become that expert.”  – Christian Alexandrou, 2021-22 Public Policy Fellow


Please contact Ryan Wolfe, manager of continuing education programs, at rwolfe@TFAS.org with any questions. All applicants must:

2019-20 Public Policy Fellows meet at the welcome reception at TFAS headquarters.
  • Live and work in the field of public policy in the Washington, D.C., area
  • Be professionals committed to the principles of limited government
  • Commit to attending the monthly evening sessions (Tuesdays 6:30-8:30 p.m.) as well as the weekend fall and spring retreats

The Fellowship is designed for young professionals with two to ten years of experience, but all applicants with a strong resume will be considered. Graduate students may apply, but preference will be given to those currently working in the field of public policy.


2017-18 Public Policy Fellow Dylan Reed connects with Fellowship alumni Priyanka Surio and Johnathan McGee at the 2017 Welcome Reception.
Fellows participate in Socratic-style discussions.

Welcome Reception
Thursday, Sept. 15, 2022
6-8:30 p.m.

Opening Speaker Event
Friday, Sept. 16, 2022
4-6:30 p.m.

Fall Retreat
Oct. 20-23, 2022
Location: Russell Kirk Center, Mecosta, Michigan

Spring Retreat
Feb. 24-26, 2023
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Monthly Speaker Events
Nov. 1, 2022
Dec. 13, 2022
Jan. 10, 2023
March 14, 2023
April 11, 2023

Closing Dinner
May 9, 2023


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