politics & International Relations
To prepare our graduates for service in both the public and private sectors and for graduate work in politics, law, and public service, Ursinus provides all politics majors with a sound theoretical base and practical experience in the political arena. Courses in American government, political theory, comparative politics, and international relations form the foundation. This combination of classroom knowledge and real-world experience is unbeatable: our majors have gone on to graduate programs at top universities, including the University of Pennsylvania and the University of California at Berkeley. In addition to working for major corporations, our graduates also have pursued careers with the State Department, the U.S. Senate, the Department of Defense, and other public institutions. They earned their way with these advantages:
- Off Campus Opportunities: To gain practical experience, the department of politics encourages all majors to participate in off-campus programs. Students may choose to study for up to a year in many countries, from Mexico to Japan. The Washington Semester (through AmericanUniversity) and the Capital Semester (in Harrisburg) offer firsthand experience of government.
- Strength in International Relations: All students take courses in international politics, but Ursinus offers a special track for majors that can include courses in war and revolution, in U.S. foreign policy, and in such specialty areas as Japanese and Chinese politics. Important publications and international connections put Ursinus professors at the cutting edge of this emerging discipline.
- Peace and Justice Studies: Several students within the department have self-designed majors in Peace and Justice Studies, just one example of the college's flexibility in dealing with individual interests.
- Student Research and Publication: Majors complete intensive seminars in all four areas of politics, and all qualified students have the opportunity to work on independent projects with a faculty member. Recent projects have included studies of the debt cris in Latin America and of the impact of American aid and trade on African development. Students regularly present their work at research conferences. Majors also edit and publish their own research in the department's Journal of Politics and International Relations.