Major: Political Science
Minor: Political Science
Related Major and Minor: History
Program Director: Thomas C. Ellington Associate Professor of Political Science
The political science major at Wesleyan provides students with a solid background in comparative and international politics, American politics and political theory. Courses approach the study of politics from a variety of perspectives, with focuses ranging from individual political behavior to the interactions of large institutions in the international arena. In addition to becoming acquainted with the empirical findings of contemporary political science, students also examine the methods by which those findings are reached, thus strengthening their critical thinking skills and gaining a deeper understanding of the nature of knowledge itself. Students also examine the fundamental normative questions of politics. A student who graduates with a degree in political science will be well prepared to speak and write clearly and persuasively not only about what the condition of the political world is but also what she believes it should be.
Students may choose to major in political science with a pre-law track. This gives students interested in a career in the law the opportunity to pursue a major course of study that gives them exposure to particular knowledge and analytical skills that will help prepare them law school. In addition to studying politics and government, students would take courses in related areas, such as business, communications, ethics, logic, and the history of US civil rights to develop knowledge and skills that they may use in the study of law. It should be noted that guidelines for law school admission do not designate any one particular area in which a student must major in order to be admitted to law school. This major is therefore not required for a student interested in law school. For information about specific courses offered, please see our Academic Catalogue.
Students may pursue a variety of internships, including several devoted to community service. Law-related internship sponsors include the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Macon, the Bibb Country District Attorney's Office, and various law firms. Other students have chosen internships with Georgia’s senators and representatives in Washington D.C., the Smithsonian Institution, the Macon Chamber of Commerce, local television stations, the Ocmulgee Indian Mounds, the Hay House, the Tubman Museum, and Middle Georgia Libraries.
The political science faculty encourages their students to participate in extracurricular experiences that enhance their understanding of politics. Students participate in campus organizations such as Young Democrats, College Republicans, and Amnesty International. The College has a Model United Nations chapter and teams of our students regularly participate in the annual Southern Regional Model UN and the Harvard Model UN. Further, through the Public Leadership Education Network, a consortium of women’s colleges, students participate in public leadership seminars in Washington, D.C. on topics such as ‘Women in Congress’ and ‘International Public Policy and Women.’
Political science majors pursue a variety of careers, including ones in law, politics, journalism, civil service, the non-profit sector and social work. Many go on to law school or graduate study in political science and our students have attended such prestigious institutions as Emory, Vanderbilt, the University of Georgia, Georgia Tech, and the London School of Economics.
Our graduates include the vice president for legal affairs at the University of Georgia; an assistant treasurer for the Educational Finance Division of Chase Manhattan Bank; the Press Secretary to U.S. Senator Mark Pryor of Arkansas; a vice-president of a non-profit fundraising agency; a state judge; and an attorney at the Georgia Public Defenders Office.
Barbara Donovan Professor of Political Science. B.A. (International Relations) Tufts University 1985; M.A. (Area Studies) University of London 1987; Ph.D (Political Science) Georgetown University 1997. Tate 131. email@example.com
Thomas C. Ellington Associate Professor of Political Science. B.A. (Political Science, Journalism) University of Alabama 1994; M.A. (Political Science) University of Alabama 1996; M.A. (Government and Politics) University of Maryland 1998; Ph.D. (Government and Politics) University of Maryland 2004. Tate 134. firstname.lastname@example.org