The Constitutional Fellows Program

Offered by the The American Conservative and the Center for the Study of Statesmanship (CSS) at Catholic University.

**Applications for the Spring 2021 semester are open—apply now! More information below.**

The U.S. Constitution is everywhere cited, but how many really know what they are talking about? The Constitution assumes an entire view of human nature, society, and politics and has moral and cultural preconditions. Without people who respect and embody the spirit of the Constitution, the Constitution cannot be sustained. Truly to understand the text of the Constitution it is necessary to be familiar with its historical sources and the view of life that it implies.

The Constitutional Fellows Program is a three month course of study designed for Congressional staffers, journalists, and other policy professionals. Offered at a time when America’s constitutional order may seem to be crumbling, the program illuminates the meaning of the Constitution and the prospects for its reinvigoration.

Each session will have a seminar format and will be conducted by two or three leading experts. Students will prepare for each session by studying carefully chosen and manageable readings. Now in its third semester, the Constitutional Fellows Program has featured faculty members like Claes Ryn (CUA), William Smith (CUA), Rod Dreher (TAC), Patrick Deneen (University of Notre Dame), Oren Cass (American Compass), Daniel McCarthy (The Fund for American Studies), John Burtka (Intercollegiate Studies Institute), Bradley J. Birzer (Hillsdale College), Jonathan Askonas (CUA), Justin Litke (CUA), Joseph Baldacchino (CUA), Chris Owen (Northeastern State U.), David Hendrickson (Colorado College), Emily Finley (Stanford), Michael Federici (Middle Tennessee State U.), and more.

The topics of the six sessions will be:

The Moral and Cultural Context of American Constitutionalism

Ancient and Christian Origins of American Constitutionalism

Radical Democracy, Socialism, and Other Domestic Challenges

The Constitution and Foreign Policy

Constitutionalism and Economics

Contemporary Challenges for American Constitutionalism

Students who attend at least five of the six sessions will be certified as graduates of the Constitutional Fellows Program. Students who show particular commitment and distinguish themselves in discussion will be designated Honors Graduates.

Only a limited number of students can be admitted. For the Spring 2021 semester, the application deadline is January 29, 2021. To seek admission, send an application to The application should contain (1) a c.v., (2) a personal statement of about 500 words on why the applicant wishes to participate, and (3) at least one letter of recommendation from a person–usually a supervisor or a current or former professor–who can speak to the applicant’s suitability for the Program. Students who are admitted will pay a $25.00 enrollment fee.

While COVID restrictions may force early sessions into a virtual format, every effort will be made to hold program sessions in person in Washington, DC. Participants should be mindful of the expectation to attend in person in Washington, especially later in the semester.

Fall 2020 class of the Constitutional Fellows Program

Chandler Averette, National Republican Senatorial Committee

John Connolly, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

Suanne Edmiston, Legislative Director for Rep. Steve King (R-IA)

Jorge Gonzalez-Gallarza Hernández, senior researcher at Fundación Civismo.

Paul David Harshman, system vulnerability analyst at the Department of Defense.

Robert Hasler, ministry associate with Ministry to State.

Jessica Kramer, freelance video host for Media Research Center.

Michael Marn, policy assistant at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck.

Quinn Marschik, policy advisor in the Office of the Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs at the Department of Labor.

Dustin Messer, priest at All Saints Dallas.

Julie Mitchell, Outreach Assistant and Intern Coordinator at Media Research Center.

Sam Mulopulos, Legislative Assistant for Senator Rob Portman (R-OH)

Michael Rafferty, US Army (ret.)

Jacob Stubbs, Legislative Assistant in the U.S. Senate.

Daniel “Sully” Sullivan, Foundation Ambassador of the Shafik Gabr Foundation.

Sydney Thomas, Communications Director in the U.S. Congress.

Karen Testerman, US Marine Embassy Guard Unit.


Spring 2020 class of the Constitutional Fellows Program

Clare Basil, Legislative Correspondent for Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR).

Robert Bellafiore, Policy Advisor at the Joint Economic Committee.

Shane Devine, research assistant at the Capital Research Center.

Caroline G. Douglas, law author, university instructor, media host and guest.

Isaac Easton, Research Assistant for Senator Mike Lee (R-UT).

Tyler Fagan, Legislative Correspondent for Representative Jason Smith (MO-08).

Nicholas Grandpre, staff assistant in the office of U.S. Senator Steve Daines (R-MT).

Dan Grazier, former Marine Corps captain, writer, and lecturer.

Amalia C. Halikias, Communications Director of the Joint Economic Committee.

James Haynes, research assistant in the Brookings Institution’s China Center.

Anthony Hennen, managing editor at the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal.

Rebecca Sears Holdenried, external relations director for Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF).

Wells King, policy advisor to Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) on the Joint Economic Committee.

Christopher Krepich, communications director for Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner.

Sarah Lee, Communications Director and External and Media Relations Manager at the Capital Research Center.

Michael Lucchese, digital media assistant in the office of Senator Ben Sasse.

James Mazol, Policy Director for the Aviation and Space and Security Subcommittees on the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

Scott Reber, Legislative Assistant for Sen James E. Risch (ID).

Carlos Roa, senior editor at the National Interest.

John Shelton, legislative assistant in the United States Congress.

Amber Todoroff, policy associate at the Environmental and Energy Study Institute.