WASHINGTON, D.C. — A local student will have the opportunity to study political philosophy in Washington, D.C. this summer, gaining first-hand experience with the world of politics.
Matthew Hogan, Jr., a graduate of Saratoga Springs High School and a rising senior at Villanova University, was accepted into the Hudson Institute Political Studies 2023 Summer Fellowship, where he will spend the summer studying political philosophy.
Hogan is one of 54 students from colleges across the country who will attend the program.
The Hudson Institute fellowship involves the study of political thought and public policy, with students participating in “courses led by master teachers, policy workshops directed by field experts and experienced government officials, and a distinguished speaker series of exemplary figures from public life,” according to the Hudson Institute website.
Hogan is a double major in political science and humanities at Villanova, and also holds a double minor in Italian and French. He said he enjoys studying political philosophy to help learn from the past.
“I like the study of political philosophy because I think we can learn a lot from the past to help combat issues and problems that we currently face, and in the future,” said Hogan.
He said the experience in D.C. will be valuable, and said he is looking forward to meeting new people and making connections.
“That’s one of the points that I’m most looking forward to about this program,” Hogan said. “Because I could just spend the summer here, reading political philosophers on my own if I really wanted to, but it’s that interaction with other people. … I want to be in the office, doing stuff, and interacting with people, because I just appreciate that a lot about life.”
“We’re very thrilled for him,” added Matthew Hogan, Sr., Matthew’s father. “He’s going to meet with a lot of people from D.C. that are in the political realm.”
Hogan Sr. is also an alum of Villanova, and said it is meaningful to see Matthew succeed at the school, saying he is “a phenomenal kid.”
“I’m thrilled he goes to Villanova, because that’s where I went,” said Hogan Sr. “The way I always describe him is, he got my wife and I’s best qualities without getting our worst qualities.”
To apply for the fellowship, Hogan wrote an essay detailing why he wants to study political philosophy, and also submitted a writing sample and a letter of recommendation along with his resume. After going through a phone interview, he was accepted into the program.
“I’m very ecstatic about it,” said Hogan. “Political philosophy is one of the fields that interests me the most. Accruing hard data, or quantitative data, is an important aspect of political science, but I also think that there’s a lot to be derived from the theoretical realm as well. You can’t just stay confined to the quantitative. I think you have to venture out into the qualitative and kind of incorporate them both together.”
While Hogan said he is unsure of his career aspirations after college, he has been gaining a wide variety of experience. In addition to the Hudson Institute fellowship, Hogan has studied abroad in France, and will spend the fall 2023 semester in Bologna, Italy.
“I’m directly enrolling in the University of Bologna, and I’ll take all my political science classes and humanities, which is my second major,” Hogan said.
He said his variety of experiences are his way of “feeling out the waters,” and said he hopes to have an idea of his career plans as the year continues.
“I’ll just be in the town, so I’ll just be able to fully immerse myself, which will be a challenge, but nonetheless, I think it will entail a lot of personal growth,” said Hogan.