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The heart of our political science is peering into decisions that change the world.

Study the forces that change the world

Political science helps you make sense of the political world around us, and the political world affects us all.

In our program you will learn about politics, government, and public policy in the US and abroad and about why nations do (and do not!) get along.

You will learn how things work and you will acquire the tools to question, to analyze systems and institutions, and to develop your own views about the best policies, programs, and organizational rules for the world you envision.

You will learn in and out of the classroom via debates, simulations, trips to important political sites, and engaged classroom conversation. You will think more deeply about the important political issues of the day.

Political Science students pursue many different career paths

Some of our majors continue their political interests through public service. Recent majors work for the following: New York City Office of Management and Budget, Maine House of Representatives, Boston City Council campaign, PA House of Representatives, PA Senate, PA Governor’s Office, New Jersey Assembly, Snyder County PA Commissioner.

Others work for non-profit corporations in education, human services, and health care. Some are lobbyists or data analysts and others work in insurance. Some work in higher education as professors or grant writers, or pursue jobs in finance, publishing, and human resources. A political science degree gives you skills to follow many paths.

Some students attend law school, pursue graduate degrees in public policy, public administration, or doctorates in political science!

Real-world opportunities right away

In your first year you have the opportunity to make connections with political science alumni through on-campus visits, shadowing experiences, and off-campus trips. Dozens of internship opportunities are shared with students every year and we’ll help you determine what makes the most sense for you.

Our proximity to Harrisburg – the state capital – and our many alumni who work there provide plentiful internship and networking opportunities. With Washington, D.C. and New York 3 hours away, our students pursue internships with national and international agencies.

Graduate Schools Attended

American University (Masters in Economics)

Boston University School of Medicine (Masters in Emergency Health Care Management)

George Mason University (Masters. International Commerce and Policy)

George Washington University (MA – Security Studies)

Lebanon Valley College (MBA)

Lehigh University (Masters in Economics)

Lehigh University (Masters in Political Science)

New York University (MPA)

Northeastern University (Masters in Applied Educational Psychology)

Penn State University (MPA)

Shippensburg University (MPA)

University of Denver (MA in International Studies)

University of Houston (Doctorate – Political Science)

UMBC (Master of Public Health Policy, Health Policy Analysis)

University of South Carolina (Doctorate – Political Science)

Villanova University (MPA)

Law Schools Attended

Boston College Law

Catholic Law School

Dickinson Law School

Drexel Law School

Fordham Law

New York Law School

Penn State Law

Quinnipiac University Law School

Rutgers Law School

St. Louis University Law School

University of Baltimore Law School

University of Pittsburgh Law

University of New Hampshire Law

Villanova Law

Washington and Lee University School of Law

Widener Law – Delaware

Widener Law - Harrisburg

Employers - Position

2U – Healthcare Inbound Marketing Coordinator

Amazon – Inventory Control/Quality Assurance

American College of Emergency Physicians – Reimbursement Manager

Army National Guard – First Lieutenant

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center – Emergency Project Manager

Business Insider – Producer

Candidate for Office, Boston City Council – Campaign Manager

Chipotle Mexican Grill – Business Analyst

Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen, and Hamilton – Human Resources Assistant

Commonwealth Foundation for Public Policy Alternatives – Government Relations

Communities in Schools National Office – Director of Constituent Engagement

Consumer Technology Association – Senior Director Government Affairs

Deutsche Bank – Asst VP in Credit Risk Management

DNB First – Executive Administrative Assistant

Downington High School West – Learning Support Teacher

Einstein Healthcare Management – Patient Service Representative

Gettysburg University – Director of Foundation, Government and Faculty Grants

Harvard University – Faculty Administrator

Independence Blue Cross – Director of Government Affairs

Isaacson Miller (search firm) – Senior Associate

KTMG – Senior Associate, Transfer Pricing

Leslie J. Garfield and Company – Real Estate Adviser

Maine House of Representatives – Legislative Aide to the Speaker of the House

Michael Page – Cyber and Information Security Recruitment Specialist

Missouri Attorney General – Assistant Attorney General

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization – Manager, Health Policy Analysis

National Student Clearinghouse – Technical Specialist

New Jersey State Assembly – Director of Policy and Communications

New Jersey State Assembly – Legislative Aide

New York City Office of Management and Budget – Budget Analyst

Northwestern Mutual – Financial Representative

NORWESCAP – Executive Director

Overseas Private Investment Corporation – Director, Corporate Development and Chair, Innovative Financial Intermediaries Program

Peace Corps - Albania

PA House of Representatives, Children and Youth Committee – Democratic Executive Director

PA House of Representatives, Republican Policy Committee – Research Analyst/Communications Coordinator

PA Senate – Media and Policy Coordinator

PA Partnerships for Children – Vice President of Public Policy

PredictIt – Data Analyst

Rhode Island Insurance Company – Client Solutions Manager

Rose City Projects, LLC - Principal

Service Source – Senior Operations Support Specialist

Shire – Launch Excellence and Planning Lead, US Medical Affairs

Southeast Lancaster Health Services – Outreach and Enrollment Specialist

State Farm Insurance – Insurance Agent

Township of Union Board of Education – Teacher

TWD and Associates – Senior Business Development Manager

University of MD, Carey School of Law – Program Manager

Virginia Commonwealth University – Associate Chair and Professor of Political Science

Requirements for the Major in Political Science. Majors take 44 semester hours in political science, all with grades of C- or better and at least a 2.00 political science GPA. Twenty-four semester hours of electives are selected with faculty adviser guidance (these may include two hours of internship credit); 16 of these semester hours must be at the 300 level or higher.

Semester Hours View Full Course Catalog >>
4 POLI-111 American Government and Politics
4 POLI-121 Comparative Government and Politics
4 POLI-131 World Affairs
or POLI-133 World Affairs: Statecraft
4 POLI-205 Research Methods

24       24 hours of electives selected with faculty adviser guidance (may include two hours of internship credit); 16 of these semester hours must be at the 300 level or higher.

4 POLI-501 Senior Seminar

The department also recommends additional courses in other areas, depending upon career goals. Frequent choices include business, communications, economics, earth and environmental sciences, foreign language, history, and sociology.

Minor in Political Science. A political science minor complements many other majors. The minor requires 24 semester hours with grades of C- or better and at least a 2.00 GPA in the minor. Required courses include POLI-111, POLI-121, and either POLI-131 or POLI-133. At least 4 of the 24 semester hours must be at the 300-level or above.

Secondary Teaching Certification. Coursework required by the state of Pennsylvania for admission to the teacher certification program includes successful completion of ENGL-100 Writing and Thinking or equivalent course, at least 3 semester hours in British or American literature, at least 6 semester hours of mathematics coursework (or other courses which satisfy the Central Curriculum Analytical Thought requirement), and at least one 40-hour externship.

Education course requirements for secondary education are EDUC-101 Introduction to Education and Society, EDUC-102 Historical and Philosophical Foundations of Education, EDUC-250 Educational Psychology, EDUC-260 Introduction to Special Education, EDUC-270 Instruction of Exceptional Students, EDUC-330 Technology in Education, EDUC-350 English Language Learners: Theory and Instruction, EDUC-380 Instructional Design, EDUC-479 Principles of Learning and Teaching in Secondary Education, EDUC-483 Differentiated Instruction and Classroom Management in Secondary Education, and the EDUC-500 Student Teaching package (EDUC-501, EDUC-502, EDUC-503, and EDUC-600).

Political science secondary education students complete the regular political science major with one change in the requirements:  rather than taking 24 semester hours of departmental electives, secondary education students take 20 semester hours of departmental electives.  In addition to taking the courses listed above, secondary education political science students must complete certification in either social studies or citizenship.  The requirements for certification in social studies are EDUC-425 Methods of Curriculum Instruction and Assessment in Teaching Social Studies, SOCI-101 Principles of Sociology, ANTH-162 Introduction to Anthropology, ECON-105 Elements of Economics, PSYC-101 Principles of Psychology, HIST-322 Pennsylvania History or HIST-324 Pennsylvania's Pasts and Their Publics, 1 course in U. S. history (HIST-111, HIST-112 or HIST-115), 1 course in European history (HIST-131 or HIST-132), and 1 course in non-Western history (HIST-151, HIST-152, HIST-171, HIST-172, HIST-180, or HIST-181).  The requirements for certification in citizenship are EDUC-427 Methods of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment in Teaching Citizenship, ANTH-162 Introduction to Anthropology, ECON-105 Elements of Economics, HIST-322 Pennsylvania History or HIST-324 Pennsylvania's Pasts and Their Publics, 1 course in U. S. history (HIST-111, HIST-112 or HIST-115), 1 course in European history (HIST-131 or HIST-132), and 1 course in non-Western history (HIST-151, HIST-152, HIST-171, HIST-172, HIST-180, or HIST-181).

Michele Ann DeMary, Ph.D.

Department: Political Science
Associate Professor of Political Science

Andrea M. Lopez, Ph.D.

Department: Political Science
Associate Professor of Political Science

Nicholas J. Clark, Ph.D.

Department: Political Science
Assistant Professor of Political Science

Rolfe D. Peterson

Department: Political Science
Assistant Professor of Political Science

Kirk Harris

Department: Political Science
Assistant Professor of Political Science

SueEllen Heimbach

Department: Provost
Academic Assistant

Related majors

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Department of Political Science

514 University Ave.
Selinsgrove, Pa. 17870

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Nick Clark, department head

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