The political science major prepares students for careers in law, business, journalism, criminal justice, state, local, and federal government, political campaigns, interest groups, and high school and college teaching. The major gives students the tools to effectively participate in community organizations, electoral politics, and social movements.
Upon graduation, our majors have pursued an exciting range of options, from political campaigns and PhD programs to election monitoring and the Peace Corps. Each year, a percentage of our majors apply to competitive law schools across the country. Other graduates have worked for political parties, or elected officials. A number of our majors have started their own businesses. Some have found jobs in the federal government, or at the state or local level.
We regularly invite alums back to campus to talk to our current students about career opportunities and the world outside the classroom.
Legal Career Opportunities
Political science students who are interested pursuing a legal career often find employment with corporations, labor unions, trade associations, government agencies, or the foreign service. It is important to realize that law-trained individuals also apply their skills to other than traditional law practice. A political science background coupled with legal training can be an invaluable asset for those interested in public administration or politics.
Federal Government Career Opportunities
Many political science majors seek employment with the federal government. The federal government structure is extremely large and varied and the job opportunities are numerous. A federal government job can cover a wide variety of areas: a teacher in an overseas control school for military or diplomatic children, a junior administrator, budget or personnel assistant to a US overseas installation, or in a government agency inside the US; or a program analyst in the Environmental Protection Agency. You might also be interested in becoming an aide on the staff of a Congressional committee or work in the office of a member of Congress.
State and Local Career Opportunities
Many political science majors seek careers in state and local governments. State and local governments are hiring more people because they are being asked to deal with a wide range of societal problems. The states are taking increased responsibility in such areas as equal opportunity, consumer protection, highway safety, water pollution, soil conservation, the rehabilitation of addicts, industrial development, and manpower training.
Our alumni have become distinguished in the fields of law, government, politics, civil service, private corporations, public relations, and teaching. The Political Science Department has made special efforts to keep in touch with alumni who are prominent in their fields, especially in law, inviting them back for frequent contact with our current students, both formally as guest lecturers in classes and informally at get-togethers with undergraduates.