BA in Political Science

Whether your goal is to someday work on a presidential campaign, champion international relationships, spearhead changes to public policy or run a nonprofit organization, understanding the many facets of political science is essential.

Program Overview

Sevina Jackson CAS 19’ has made the most of her time at Quinnipiac. The political science major participated in an unforgettable two-week seminar at The Washington Center in Washington, D.C

Fully immersed

Sevina Jackson ’19 has made the most of her time at Quinnipiac. The political science major participated in an unforgettable two-week seminar at The Washington Center in Washington, D.C.

From candidate messaging and strategy to the behind-the-scenes mechanics of the legislative process, the political system relies upon the expertise of individuals who have chosen to make their living in public service. We’ll prepare you for a career in government, journalism, law, the nonprofit sector or corporate world.   

You’ll learn to analyze policy and think strategically by putting modern politics in a historical context. You’ll also develop an understanding of foreign governments. Our program emphasizes hands-on learning in the field, so you’ll discover the tangible impacts of politics in everyday life through internship opportunities with congressional campaigns, lobbying firms or through our Semester Abroad program in Washington, D.C. 

You’ll have access to Quinnipiac’s Albert Schweitzer Institute, which sponsors programs and lectures with notable figures, such as Nobel laureates and former U.S. presidents. Some of our recent political science graduates are working as political reporters in Washington, D.C., for the U.S. State Department in Afghanistan and Turkey; and working as staffers for local and state-level politicians.

"Attending The Washington Center seminar was an experience that I will never forget, and I encourage all majors to attend if they can. I was surrounded by people of different ideologies who made me challenge my own beliefs and expanded my knowledge. It was an experience I do not believe I could have gotten from any other program."
Sevina Jackson ’19

Internship Opportunities

Don’t just learn about policy — shape it

Changes in the political landscape are happening at hyper-speed, and your education has to help you understand the impact of these changes. In our Political Science program, you’ll learn by doing. Through well-placed internships, you will gain knowledge and experience from leaders in the areas that influence international organizations, global security and foreign policy. From political campaigns, lobbying groups, government councils and commissions, you will have the opportunity to chart your direction with noted political offices and firms. You’ll build industry skills on campus while gaining industry experience through internships at some of the most respected organizations in politics.

Our students have held internships at offices and companies such as:

  • Human Rights Campaign (DC)
  • U.S. Marshals Service (DC)
  • U.S. Secret Service (DC)
  • Town of  Hamden – Mayor’s  Office
  • Town of Hamden –  Community and Economic Development
  • INTERPOL (DC)
  • Human Rights Watch (London)
  • Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services (IRIS) –  (New Haven)
  • National Public Radio (DC)
  • National Association of  State Foresters (DC)
  • Connecticut Senate Democrats (CT Capitol)
  • Chwat Group – (Lobbying in DC)
  • Office of Congresswoman Rosa  DeLauro  (DC)
  • Shirley & Banister Public Affairs (Lobbying  Firm in DC)
  • Potomac Advocates (DC – foreign policy advocacy)
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (DC)
  • D.C. Witness  (online newspaper in DC)
  • World War I Centennial Commission (DC)
  • Sullivan and LeShane Lobbying  Firm (Hartford CT)
  • Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America  (DC)
  • Council on Foreign Relations (DC)
  • Congressional Chorus (DC)

Political Science student Ali Munshi 18' listens to a lecture at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace building by an expert on nuclear arms control in Washington D.C. on Wed, Jan. 19, 2017.

In the mix

Political science major Ali Munshi ’18 listens to a lecture at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace building by an expert on nuclear arms control in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 19, 2017.

Careers

A bachelor's degree in political science can be useful in a number of career areas. Graduates can work in federal, state and local governments; law; business; international organizations; nonprofit associations and organizations; campaign management and polling; journalism; research and university and college teaching. Political science majors gain administrative skills and communication abilities that are valued in a wide spectrum of potential careers.

Examples of careers for political science majors:

  • Activist, Advocate / Organizer 
  • Administration, Corporate, Government, Nonprofit, etc.
  •  Archivist, Online Political Data 
  • Budget Examiner or Analyst 
  • Attorney 
  • Banking Analyst or Executive 
  • Campaign Operative 
  • Career Counselor 
  • CIA Analyst or Agent 
  • City Planner 
  • City Housing Administrator 
  • Congressional Office / Committee Staffer 
  • Coordinator of Federal or State Aid 
  • Communications Director 
  • Corporate Analyst 
  • Corporate Public Affairs Adviser 
  • Corporate Economist 
  • Corporate Manager 
  • Corporate Information Analyst 
  • Corporate Adviser for Governmental Relations

Source - aspnet.org

  • Corporate Executive 
  • Corporation Legislative Issues Manager 
  • Customs Officer 
  • Editor, Online Political Journal 
  • Entrepreneur 
  • Federal Government Analyst 
  • Financial Consultant 
  • Foreign Service Officer 
  • Foundation President 
  • Freelance Writer 
  • High School Government Teacher 
  • Immigration Officer 
  • Information Manager 
  • Intelligence Officer 
  • International Agency Officer 
  • International Research Specialist 
  • Issues Analyst / Corporate Social Policy Division
  • Journalist 
  • Labor Relations Specialist
  • Legislative Analyst / Coordinator 
  • Lobbyist 
  • Management Analyst 
  • Mediator 
  • Plans and Review Officer, USIA 
  • Policy Analyst 
  • Political Commentator 
  • Pollster 
  • Public Affairs Research Analyst 
  • Public Opinion Analyst 
  • Publisher 
  • Research Analyst 
  • State Legislator 
  • Survey Analyst 
  • Systems Analyst 
  • Teacher 
  • University Administrator 
  • University Professor 
  • Urban Policy Planner 
  • Web Content Editor

Curriculum and Requirements

BA in Political Science Curriculum

In addition to the University Curriculum and the College of Arts and Sciences Liberal Arts Track requirements, students majoring in Political Science must meet the following requirements for graduation:

Political Science Core Requirements
PO 101Issues in Politics3
PO 131Introduction to American Government and Politics3
PO 211Introduction to International Relations3
PO 215Political Theory3
PO 225American Political Movements3
PO 401Political Inquiry3
PO 408Senior Seminar3
Electives
Select five political science or cognate courses:15
Political sciences courses:
PO 205
Public Policy and Administration
PO 206
Ethics and Public Leadership
PO 216
American Political Thought
PO 217
Contemporary Social and Political Philosophy (PL 217)
PO 219
Women in Political Thought (WS219)
PO 221
Introduction to Latin America
PO 227
The Politics of Intimacy
PO 231
Elections and Political Parties (SL: Service Learning)
PO 245
International Political Economy
PO 247
Actors and Processes in U.S. Foreign Policy
PO 270
State and Local Government
PO 311
Topics in International Relations
PO 312
Philosophy of War and Peace (PL 312)
PO 315
Democratic Theory and Practice
PO 317
International Law (LE 317)
PO 319
International Interventions
PO 321
Comparative Government
PO 325
Political Psychology and Public Opinion
PO 331
Topics in Comparative Government
PO 334
Topics in African Politics
PO 337
Human Rights: Theory and Practice (PL 337)
PO 342
Comparative Constitutional Law (LE 342)
PO 348
Political Communication
PO 353/LE 340
American Constitutional Law (LE340)
PO 360
Topics in American Politics
PO 362
Presidential Election Campaigns (SL: Service Learning)
PO 365
Inside Washington, D.C.
PO 387
Women and Public Policy (WS 387)
PO 399
Intermediate Independent Study in Political Science
Cognate courses: 1
IB 201
Globalization and International Business
PS 261
Social Psychology
SO 264
Social Welfare Institutions
Total Credits36
1

In addition to political science courses, a student may count up to two of the cognate courses toward completion of the political science major.

Experiential Requirement

PO 395, PO 365 or equivalent approved by the department. Students should plan with their academic advisers early to complete this requirement before the start of their senior year. With department approval, this requirement may be completed with one of the following:

  • A political science course taken in a study abroad program;
  • A political science course taken in the Washington, D.C., program;
  • A service learning course in any discipline (must have “SL” designation).

Portfolio Requirement

In their senior year, students assemble a portfolio of representative academic work done in political science. This portfolio includes the senior thesis, an internship paper (or equivalent), and other key assignments.

Tracks in Political Science

Students choosing to focus their studies in either the public policy and leadership track or the global affairs track may choose from among the following electives beyond the core required courses:

Public Policy and Leadership Track

Select 15 credits of the following:15
PO 205
Public Policy and Administration
PO 206
Ethics and Public Leadership
PO 227
The Politics of Intimacy
PO 231
Elections and Political Parties (SL: Service Learning)
PO 247
Actors and Processes in U.S. Foreign Policy
PO 270
State and Local Government
PO 315
Democratic Theory and Practice
PO 325
Political Psychology and Public Opinion
PO 335
Politics of Race and Ethnicity
PO 348
Political Communication
PO 353
American Constitutional Law (LE340)
PO 360
Topics in American Politics
PO 362
Presidential Election Campaigns (SL: Service Learning)
PO 365
Inside Washington, D.C.
PO 387
Women and Public Policy (WS 387)
Total Credits15

Global Affairs Track 

Select 15 credits of the following:15
PO 221
Introduction to Latin America
PO 245
International Political Economy
PO 247
Actors and Processes in U.S. Foreign Policy
PO 311
Topics in International Relations
PO 312
Philosophy of War and Peace (PL 312)
PO 317
International Law (LE 317)
PO 319
International Interventions
PO 321
Comparative Government
PO 334
Topics in African Politics
PO 335
Politics of Race and Ethnicity
PO 337
Human Rights: Theory and Practice (PL 337)
PO 342
Comparative Constitutional Law (LE 342)
Total Credits15

Additional course details
Explore descriptions, schedule and instructor information using the Course Finder tool.