Czech Republic


AIPES 2017 Dates: 8 July-29 July 2017

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Are you interested in a career in international affairs?  Do you want to discuss complex contemporary issues in a diverse academic setting? Are you eager to visit Prague, one of the most beautiful cities in Europe?  If you answered 'yes' to any of these questions, the American Institute on Political and Economic Systems (AIPES) is the program for you.  Stand out in the competitive global job market and in graduate school admissions by gaining invaluable international experience this summer!

The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) has organized international academic institutes for more than 20 years.  Our objective is to provide a rigorous academic experience, foster dialogues that cross borders, and create a global network of responsible future leaders.

AIPES is a unique program that brings together approximately 100-110 students from North America, Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia to explore fundamental issues related to political philosophy, political economy, and conflict management.  The wide range of nationalities, religions, and ethnicities represented at AIPES gives participants the chance to interact, learn, and share their experiences in ways that can benefit their educational and professional development.

Our comprehensive package includes academic credit through Charles University, one of Europe's oldest and most prestigious universities and our partner since 1993, as well as housing, most meals, a variety of notable guest lectures, cultural and social events, and opportunities for professional development and networking.

Students who complete AIPES graduate into a global network of over 16,000 TFAS alumni. You can find TFAS alumni living and working in some of the world's most exciting cities, including Washington DC, New York, London, Paris, Beirut, Hong Kong, Beijing, Buenos Aires, and Santiago, to name just a few. Graduates of our institutes are able to use this vast network to opens doors that have lead to life changing opportunities in various corners of the world.

Come join us this summer for this once in a lifetime opportunity to study in the beautiful, historical European capital of Prague, Czech Republic!

The AIPES 2017 Institute will be held July 8 - July 29, 2017. Get more details here and read about all of the exciting aspects of AIPES.

Priority Application Deadline: 31 January 2017
Participants Needing a Visa for the Czech Republic, the Final Deadline is 21 March 2017
Final Deadline For Non-Visa Participants  15 April 2017


"AIPES was challenging, interesting; different from other courses. AIPES is an experience to get know other people/cultures from various countries, it’s a chance to learn more about US and a chance to destroy some stereotypes one may have about some countries or some nations. It’s an opportunity to stay and live in Prague which is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. AIPES gives a chance to open a new door in life, to think about future goals, to improve yourself and obtain knowledge in other fields. Your experience at AIPES will be memorable for the rest of your life. During AIPES you become the best of the best!”

Salome Ugrekhelidze
Republic of Georgia

Summer 2017: July 8 - July 29 2017

Spend 3 weeks in Prague, Czech Republic with 110 students from North America, Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia who are all passionate about exploring the many complex political and economic issues facing today's world.  The intensive schedule is designed to maximize your time with an exciting variety of academic, professional, networking, cultural, and social activities that are designed to being the best out of every student.

Program Format

AIPES consists of the following major components:

  • Academic courses in political economy, political philosophy, and conflict management accredited by Charles University in Prague
  • Guest lectures and panel discussions featuring prominent academics, diplomats, government officials, and business leaders
  • Visits to famous Prague sites and optional excursions to different well-known places around the Czech Republic
  • Social & Cultural events

Your participation also includes these exclusive benefits designed to make your summer in Prague an experience to remember:

  • Housing in furnished dormitories
  • Most meals provided in the dorm cafeteria
  • Roommate matching with students from different countries
  • A student pass for Prague's public metro, tram, and bus system for the duration of the program
  • Comprehensive orientation upon your arrival
  • Dedicated program staff members who are available to communicate with you about any issues related to funding, visas, and other general questions in the months leading up to the program
  • Continued staff support while you are in Prague to ensure that you have the best possible experience
  • Planned social and cultural events where you can connect with the other student leaders participating in the programs. These events may include a walking tour of Prague, visits to Prague museums and theaters, excursions around the Czech Republic, a bowling night, and a cultural presentations dinner
  • An active network of over 15,000 alumni worldwide to join upon successful completion of the program

“For the people of AIPES it's not enough to live an average life; these people were born to make a difference and AIPES is the meeting place to explore the American political and economical principles and apply them within their home countries. AIPES is a great inspiration and it is an honor to now be considered a respected AIPES Alumni.”

Ulyana Shtybel

Find Out More

Be sure to check out the menu tabs to read more about all aspects of the program. We accept applications on a rolling basis, so start your application anytime by clicking on the APPLY NOW link in the menu. Our staff is here to answer any question you may have – please see our Contact Us page for details on how to reach us.

Program Staff

Matthew Kwasiborski
Director, European Institutes
The Fund for American Studies

Matthew Kwasiborski joined The Fund for American Studies in February of 2005. He has directed The American Institute on Political and Economic Systems (AIPES) since 2005. In this position, Matt has worked with well over a thousand students, alumni, faculty and staff representing more than 50 countries.  Matt served as the vice president and treasurer of the Board of Advisors for the Center of International Media Ethics (CIME). Matt currently serves on the Board of Directors for the International Association of Free Ukraine.  Matt also facilitates workshops titled, "Liberating Leadership in the 21st Century", for universities, NGOs, and businesses around Europe and the United States.

A native Philadelphian, Matt earned a bachelor’s degree in history at Loyola University in New Orleans, LA and a master’s degree in executive leadership from the Thierry Graduate School of Leadership in Belgium.  Prior to joining TFAS, Matt taught English as a second language (ESL) in Fonyód, Hungary. He also served as an administrator/ teacher of world religions and cultures for the Summer in Switzerland program located at the Leysin American School. Matt previously taught world religions, morality, computers and served as a basketball coach for Mount Carmel Academy in New Orleans, La. From 2001 to 2004, he served as director of the Loyola University Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America program in New Orleans creating the largest student organization ever at Loyola. This program initiated a city-wide effort creating relationships between Loyola students and the elementary/ primary school students of New Orleans. Matt was nominated for Outstanding Alumnus of the Philadelphia Public School District in 2004.

Lenka Hlavacova
AIPES Program Manager
AIPES 2010 Alumna

Lenka Hlavacova holds MA in International Relations and BA in Political Science and International Relations, both from Charles University in Prague. She spent spring semester 2011 at IDC Herzliya in Israel and fall semester 2012 at Universite Catholique de Louvain in Belgium. Currently she works for one of the largest corporations in the world where she’s handling portfolio of French customers. She enjoys travelling, reading, movies, nice weather and time spent with friends.

This will be Lenka’s 6th consecutive summer with AIPES. She’s AIPES 2010 alumna and she joined the staff in 2011. She knows very well how much change can AIPES bring to your life and is very enthusiastic to see how people get inspired through this program.

Jan Lalic
AIPES Program Assistant
Czech Republic/Bosnia & Herzegovina
AIPES 2012 Alumnus

Jan holds Bachelor´s Degree in International Area Studies from Charles University in Prague and is currently pursuing MA in Balkan, Eurasian and Central European Studies. He was recently admitted to exchange program at the University of Washington beginning in September. His main areas of interest are the region of Western Balkans and international security. His understanding of these topics was further broadened by attending Robinson-Martin Security Scholars Program at Prague Security Studies Institute in 2012 and working as an intern at Aspen Institute Prague. Jan has also participated in organization of numerous conferences on above mentioned issues. In addition to that he works as translator and interpreter from Serbian language and instructor of self-defence. He is also a member of Czech national  karate team. In his free time he likes to read fiction and history books, practice martial arts, spend time with his family and friends, travel and watch movies.

Being a student at AIPES in 2012 was such a great experience that Jan was delighted, when he was offered to be a program assistant in following years. He is looking forward to meet new students from all around the world and enjoy once again inspiring summer.

Antonija Vidakovic
AIPES Program Assistant
AIPES 2014 Alumna

Antonija holds BA in Security Management from University of Belgrade, and is currently attending Master Program in International and European Relations at Linköping University in Sweden, graduating June 2017. Her areas of interest are international and European security, European integration and political economy. Aside from her studies, she is one of the Youth reconciliation ambassadors for the Balkans. Since October 2014, Antonija is attending the Academy of Liberal Policy in Libertarian club in Belgrade. For 3 years she had been volunteering at European Film Festival Palic, which gave her the opportunity to meet some of the most amazing people from film industry. In her spare time, Antonija enjoys spending time with her family, friends and her dog, travelling, meeting new people and visiting theater.

AIPES 2014 was one of the reasons why Antonija decided she wants to enroll to her master studies abroad. She is looking forward to spending her third AIPES summer and seeing how AIPES changes lives of this year’s participants.

Terézia Mináriková
AIPES Program Assistant
AIPES 2015 Alumna

Terézia comes from Slovakia. She is currently pursuing her bachelor degree majoring in Business Management at Comenius University in Bratislava.
She loves traveling and exploring new things. After her experience in the USA and Switzerland, where she worked with kids, she returned to Slovakia to work as an Office Manager for one year. From January to June 2016 she studied in Arctic Finland as an exchange student in International Business at Lapin University of Applied Sciences. Her semester in Lapland provided her with thorough knowledge and relevant experience in the field of business and permitted her to develop her professional skills. In that regard, she organized many events on her own for students, teachers and Finnish people.

She performs her work with passion, love and thoroughness. She is open to all opportunities, challenges and risks. She is very friendly, cheerful and happy person and she loves to see others smiling. Her strong points are her creativity and passion in any task she carries out. Her hobbies include singing, dancing, photography, video creations and design. Her secret to life is to live BIG. She is truly passionate about everything that she does.
Terézia joined the AIPES family in summer 2015 as a student.

Vladyslav Y. Tiulchenko
AIPES Program Assistant
AIPES 2015 Alumnus

Vlad holds Bachelor´s Degree in Public Relations from Taras Shevchenko University. Vlad has also attended Erasmus exchanges in Poland, Turkey and Germany. He became a freedom fighter after the Maidan Revolution 2014. He also served in the volunteer army in his native land of east Ukraine. He believes that ideas of individual freedom, small and effective government, free market system and less regulations can change the society in a better way.

Today Vlad is a National Coordinator for “Students for Liberty Ukraine”, and “Language of Liberty Institute”. He organises their conferences and seminars for youth and contributes to the public debate on education and entrepreneurship through publications and comments in media. Vlad considers himself a sportsman and has enjoyed success in swimming. He has added tennis and aikido to his list. He is also a big fan of traveling and has created his own startup. His goal to be a first Ukrainian, who will visit each country in the world.

Last year AIPES program had a big influence on Vlad. He keeps in touch regularly with his AIPES 2015 classmates coordinating future projects. This summer he is looking forward to experience another side of AIPES and to make more international friends in his favorite city - Prague.






Sample Schedule: Week 1

Please note that the AIPES 2017 schedule is subject to change.

10:00am - 1:00pm – Class - The Good Society
1:15pm-2:15pm-Group Lunch
2:15 pm - 4:15pm – Panel Discussion

10:00am - 1:00pm – Class - The Good Society
1:15pm-2:15pm-Group Lunch
2:30pm - 5:00pm – Scavenger hunt in Prague

10:00am - 11:30am – Class - The Good Society
11:45am - 1:00pm – Class - Conflict Management
1:15pm-2:15pm-Group Lunch
2:15pm - 3:00pm – Discussion Section - Conflict Management
3:15pm - 4:00pm – Discussion Section - The Good Society
4:15pm - 7:00pm – Visit Prague Museums

10:00am - 11:30am – Class - The Good Society
11:45am - 1:00pm – Class - Conflict Management
1:15pm-2:15pm-Group Lunch
2:15pm - 3:00pm – Discussion Section - Conflict Management
3:15pm - 4:00pm – Discussion Section - The Good Society
4:15pm - 5:00pm – Introduction to Simulation
9:00pm - 11:30pm – Bowling

10:00am - 11:30am – Class - The Good Society
11:45am - 1:00pm – Class - Conflict Management
1:15pm-2:15pm-Group Lunch
2:30pm - 4:00pm – Class - Conflict Management
4:15pm - 5:15pm – Review Session – The Good Society

6:30am-10:00am-Breakfast at Dorms
9:30am - 4:30pm – Explore Czech Republic (optional day trips)
Freedom Day
*Some Saturdays will have an academic program

6:30am-10:00am-Breakfast at Dorms
Freedom Day