Updated on Wednesday 6 March 2013
If you are an international student who wants to study Political Science at the undergraduate or graduate level, you’ll want to choose not just a top political science school, but a top political science school in a location that will be most advantageous for your future career. The following will help you to decide where to study political science geographically!
If, as an international student, you want to use your political science degree to study politics, there’s no better place to be than in the capital of the United States! As America’s political mecca, there is no end to the available opportunities for an aspiring political scientist or campaign worker. There are also plenty of wonderful schools located just a hop, skip, and a jump away from the White House’s front door!
George Washington University is a highly respected institution, located in the heart of Washington, DC. The Political Science department offers the standard undergraduate or graduate degree options for students, but what makes the B.A. program particularly unique is the highly selective Politics and Values program for incoming freshman. Through this yearlong, writing intensive program, students meet various Washington leaders and, according to their professors, have grown to become some of the most highly regarded political science students in the department. Additionally, the department puts out a weekly newsletter, entitled “Dr. Wiley’s Weekly Brief,” which provides students with information regarding internship opportunities in their field.
At American University, international students who are interested at getting their Bachelors or Masters of Political Science can do so at this top political science school. The program boasts an impressive academic curriculum as well as a unique degree program for students who want to jointly pursue their Bachelors and Masters degrees in Political Science. Most importantly, American University’s proximity to Washington, DC and the Political Science department’s efforts contributed to the school’s number one ranking in the 2011 US News and World Report for student internships. More internships mean more connections, which means more job opportunities!
Just because you’re not in the heart of the nation’s capital does not mean that you are missing out on internship and career opportunities in Washington. There are many top political science schools in the surrounding vicinity. Just over an hour away in Baltimore, Maryland is the renowned John Hopkins University. Even though the university is already close by, the Political Science department additionally offers their students the opportunity to apply for the Aitchison Public Service Fellowship in Government. This residential program gives juniors and seniors the opportunity to spend a semester in Washington, working and living in the capital. Previous fellows have interned with Senators, Congressmen, Embassies, and various political organizations during their fellowships.
Additionally, Concord University in West Virginia has a strong Political Science undergraduate department. They offer courses in Political Science that are specifically designed to create awareness and understanding of political institutions, processes, and relationships. Since the public university, located on 123 acres of beautiful, park-like campus, is just a few hours drive from the capital, many of their students engage in summer internships in Washington to gain experience in the field and to become more competitive as a job candidate.
As an international student interested in translating his or her degree from a top political science school into a career in the field, studying close to Washington, D.C. is not the only option. A political science degree is as beneficial for a career in municipal governments as it is to a career in the federal government. If an international student wants to work for a city government, his or her best bet is to attend college near a big city where the government positions will have more potential for growth.
Some schools located near big cities include University of Southern California in Los Angeles, New York University in New York City, and the University of Chicago in Chicago, IL. Studying at a top political science school located in or near a big city allows students to hold prestigious internships at municipalities while attending classes.