Political Science majors learn how to be change agents, public servants, community leaders, and problem solvers.
Political Science majors develop strong social science research skills, critical thinking skills, and communication skills for a wide range of careers. Most majors enter careers in law, federal, state, and city agencies, nonprofit organizations, higher education, and government advocacy positions. The median pay for a Political Scientist is $122,510, with a healthy 9% growth rate expected through 2030 (US Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Internships are valuable tools for students to learn about careers, develop professional skills and networks, and apply what they learn in the classroom to professional settings. Many of our majors complete internships, and a 3-credit internship fulfills the applied learning requirement for majors.
Our simulations allow students to apply their skills, grow their professional networks, and in some cases even earn academic credit. Our award-winning Model Illinois Government, Moot Court, and Model United Nations teams compete in simulations of the IL state legislature, appellate court hearings, and UN decision-making during the academic year. In many cases, funds are available for student travel expenses.
Writing and research are essential career skills for all students, and particularly valuable for students planning to attend law school or graduate school. All Political Science majors develop, write, and present a research project in their senior capstone course. We also encourage students to participate in undergraduate research with a faculty mentor through Departmental Honors and independent studies. Each year, our award-winning majors are recognized for their outstanding research activities.
The Political Science major is ideal for students with broad interests in American politics, international relations, comparative politics, political theory, and law. Students are prepared for a wide range of government, nonprofit, and private sector careers, including law school and graduate school.
The Civic and Nonprofit Leadership option emphasizes US public administration, public policy, and nonprofits. Students gain valuable technical skills, such as public budgeting and Geographic Information Systems, and are well-prepared for public sector, state and city management, nonprofit, and urban planning careers.
The International Studies option emphasizes international relations and comparative politics, including interdisciplinary courses in Economics, Geography, History, and World Languages. This option provides a well-rounded degree to prepare students for careers in global politics, diplomacy, international development, and advocacy.
Dr. Anderson (Ph.D. Missouri) teaches courses in American government, political theory and African American politics. Professor Anderson focuses his research on American and African American Political Thought, seeking to understand the tensions between individual liberty, collective good and American political values.
Dr. Mueller (B.A. Susquehanna University, M.A., Ph.D. Rochester) serves as the department's Graduate Coordinator. She received the 2008 Faculty Laureate for undergraduate general education teaching, the 2009 Teaching Excellence Award in the College of Sciences, and several Achievement and Contribution Awards.
Dr. Ashley (Ph.D. Northern Arizona) teaches American government, state and local politics and public administration. His research interests center primarily on tribal sovereignty and environmental policy.
"Before I came to Eastern Illinois University, I set several goals for myself and my future. I have been a part of many organizations and events pertaining to my major, which has enabled me to build connections and develop skills that will aid me in my future endeavors. I appreciate the faculty and mentors that I have met during the duration of my undergraduate years. They have all motivated and contributed to my growth in my academic courses, as a student, and a leader. One of my favorite courses was “Criminal Law”. It was so intriguing to learn about different cases and examine how the legal system has developed throughout the years. I also enjoyed “Moot Court I”, because the moot court competition(s) provided me with the opportunity to strengthen both my legal research and public speaking skills. My experience has been one that I will always remember and value. " Constance Young ('22)
Jerimiah will be attending law school at the University of Miami. Jerimiah's accomplishments at EIU include being a Lincoln Academy of Illinois Student Laureate. He was a member of EIU’s Forensics Team and a member of the EIU chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha, the first intercollegiate historically African American fraternal body focused on promoting leadership through brotherhood. He majored in political science with a minor in pre-law."Jerimiah Boyd-Johnson ('22)
Eastern Illinois University
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