Department Chairperson: Dr. William Muck
Political Science Faculty
The Political Science program stimulates intellectual curiosity with respect to power relationships within and among the mass public and its leaders. Through theoretical contemplation, applied experiences and scholarship, students develop skills to contribute meaningfully to a democracy that values diversity and social justice in a global community.
Political Science enhances the liberal education of students through a focus on the ways in which we organize and govern our world, and on the continuing struggle over issues of power, freedom, equality, justice and social order. Politics is crucial in all human relationships, whether they be social, economic, religious, cultural or even personal. In so many words, political science seeks to answer a simple question: "Who gets what, when and how?" A serious study of politics compels us to examine ethical, moral and value questions of the highest order, thereby enriching the moral, personal, leadership and intellectual development of students.
The way in which we structure our institutions, whether they be global, national or local, is a reflection of how we make decisions concerning those individuals whom we entrust to govern our lives through the policy decisions they make on our behalf. Therefore, how we decide the critical questions determines how we are governed.
Political science prepares students for many career opportunities. Graduates have pursued their life's work in the legal profession, government service, business, professional political consulting, education and journalism. Some students pursue graduate degrees as a way to enter the work world of higher education or participation in civic life. The study of political science helps all students to be effective citizens in an increasingly complex and changing world.
Degree offered: B.A.
Model United Nations: Model United Nations is open to students of all majors and all career interests. Students gain instruction and experience in the conduct of international diplomacy through public speaking, critical thinking, research and teamwork. Our students participate in a Model United Nations simulation, serving as delegates representing pre-selected countries.
Intercollegiate Mock Trial: The Mock Trial Program attracts students who are interested in law and trial procedures, regardless of major. In preparing to participate in regional and national competitions, students gain valuable experience in research, public speaking and critical thinking.
Pi Sigma Alpha: As one of 600 chapters of this national undergraduate political science honors fraternity throughout the country, the NCC Pi Sigma Alpha is open to juniors and seniors from all majors who have completed at least fifteen credits of political science including one upper-level political science course, with no grade below "B" in those classes. Students must also have an overall grade point average that places them in the top one-third of their class. The goal of Pi Sigma Alpha is to engage students and faculty interested in the study of political science in discussions and projects related to politics and government.
Internships: Many political science students choose to earn academic credit through internship experience. Recent interns have worked for members of Congress and the state legislature, as legal assistants, for international and national non-governmental organizations, and at the national, state, county and city levels of government.
Off-campus Study: Students are encouraged to pursue off-campus study and research opportunities within the United States and abroad. North Central College is a member institution of the Washington Semester Program at American University and the Washington Internship Institute, which combine the traditional classroom environment with internships and allows students to study all facets of the American political system in the nation's capital. The college has numerous study abroad opportunities for students in sites located around the world. All students are eligible to apply for Richter fellowship funding to support individualized off-campus research projects.