Student Intern in a government hall

Political Science

Discover your path in a dynamic world with Commonwealth University's Political Science program. Our program does not prepare you for a career- it prepares you for many careers. Students will develop a core set of skills that apply to a wide range of careers after graduation. This major emphasizes examining problems from multiple perspectives, attention to factual details, and the need to continually develop and revise broader theoretical ideas.

Degrees & Offerings
  • B.A.
Location
  • Bloomsburg
  • Lock Haven
  • Mansfield
Department
College
Program Contact
Chair of the Department of History, Political Science, and Philosophy / Associate Professor
Illustration of Mountain

Ready to take your place in today’s complex and increasingly interdependent world? Commonwealth University’s political science program prepares students for careers that tackle the complicated political and socioeconomic forces shaping the world.

Your journey upward awaits!

Our political science program develops the knowledge, skills, and ability to engage the political world through critical thinking, communication, and research. While many students choose our general program curriculum, students also have the opportunity to select a concentration in pre-law, international affairs, or US politics/public administration. 

As part of the general degree or any of the concentrations, we ensure that students gain an essential understanding of US Politics, Comparative Politics, International Relations, and Political Ideologies. We as faculty value individual interaction with our majors through relatively small classes (15-40 students) and highly individualized advising that includes helping students explore a wide range of career opportunities. High-achieving students may also enroll in the Honors College. 

Our program requires students to complete an internship experience, study abroad, or a thesis. Professional internships provide excellent real-world experience, and we have internships in Washington D.C., Harrisburg, and each local campus; we can even assist students with developing internships in their hometowns. An experience overseas broadens your horizons and helps develop your inter-cultural skills. A thesis experience provides the opportunity to expand your research skills under close faculty supervision.  

Studies in political science builds skills and conveys knowledge that allows you to analyze political phenomena across a wide range of contexts. The wide variety of political science courses prepare you for active citizenship; professional careers in government, international affairs, business and nongovernmental organizations; and advanced studies in law, public administration, political science and other fields. 

Course Delivery Format

  Bloomsburg

  Face-to-Face
  Online
  Hybrid

  Lock Haven

  Face-to-Face
  Online
  Hybrid

  Mansfield

  Face-to-Face
  Online
  Hybrid

  Clearfield

  Face-to-Face
  Online
  Hybrid

Courses and Curriculum

Degree Requirements Degree Requirements - International Affairs Degree Requirements - Pre-Law Degree Requirements - U.S. Public AdministrationDegree Works

Note: Degree requirements effective for enrolled students beginning Fall 2023. All enrolled students, including matriculating students prior to Fall 2023, can review their degree program requirements and track progress to degree completion with our degree audit and advisement tool, Degree Works.

Minor

Degree Requirements - Minor

Note: Degree requirements effective for enrolled students beginning Fall 2023. All enrolled students, including matriculating students prior to Fall 2023, can review their degree program requirements and track progress to degree completion with our degree audit and advisement tool, Degree Works.

 The pre-law concentration provides excellent preparation for law school. We offer courses in constitutional law, international law, and the judicial process. The Diehl Center for Law provides information and resources for law school to all campuses, and Commonwealth University has 3+3 affiliation agreements with Pitt and Widener Law. In recent years, we have placed graduates at Harvard, Iowa, Syracuse, Georgetown, and Wake Forest, among others. 

The international affairs concentration provides a focus on global politics and diplomacy. We offer courses such as US Foreign Policy, Global Issues, and various regions of the world. We encourage students to combine the concentration with other minors in fields such as history and foreign language. 

 The US politics and public administration concentration provides a rigorous examination of the political institutions, processes, and policies that shape our country. We offer courses such as the Presidency and Congress, Race and Politics, Public Policy, and Public Administration. Optional minors such as legal studies or history complement this concentration. 

POLI Political Science BA Degree Program

  1. Knowledge: Expressing knowledge in the areas of study within the discipline of political science information.
  2. Literacy: Implements skills of locating, evaluating, and effectively using political information and research.
  3. Communication: Displays effective communication skills in both written and oral communication.
  4. Citizenship: Expresses awareness of civic engagement and decision-making.

POLI Political Science Minor Program

  1. Knowledge: Expressing knowledge in the areas of study within the discipline of political science information.
  2. Literacy: Implements skills of locating, evaluating, and effectively using political information and research.
  3. Communication: Displays effective communication skills in both written and oral communication.
  4. Citizenship: Expresses awareness of civic engagement and decision-making.

Political Science at Commonwealth University

Hands-on internships and education that lead to vast opportunities for further studies and your career.

Illustration of Mountain

Internships: All political science majors must complete either an internship, study abroad experience, or thesis project. Academic internships provide a vital opportunity for students to develop valuable skills and gain hands-on experience in a possible career field. In an increasingly competitive global job market, internships have become essential for career advancement and entry into competitive graduate programs.

Our students have had successful internships with:

  • Pennsylvania Governor’s Office
  • Pennsylvania State Legislature
  • State and Local Government Agencies  
  • Political Consultancy and Public Relations Firms
  • Political Campaigns
  • District Attorney and public defender offices
  • Law Firms
  • Non-profit Agencies
  • The Washington Center (TWC): This independent, nonprofit organization provides selected students challenging opportunities to work and learn in Washington with federal, state, local, profit, and non-profit partners.  

And more! 

While most political science graduates pursue careers in law, politics, and public service, our major prepares you for a variety of careers. Recent graduates have gained employment as:

  • Federal and State Civil Servants
  • Intelligence Analyst  
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • Legal Professional
  • Legislative Staffer
  • Federal Contract Specialist
  • Campaign Manager
  • Federal, State, and Local Law Enforcement Officers  
  • Advocacy and Community Relations Organizer
  • Government Relations Professional
  • Elected Public Official  

Law School

Recent graduates have been admitted to the following law schools:  

  • Harvard Law  
  • Georgetown Law
  • Duquesne Law
  • Penn State Dickinson Law
  • University of Pittsburgh Law
  • Syracuse Law
  • Penn State Law
  • Wake Forest Law
  • West Virginia University College of Law
  • Widener University Law
  • Widener Commonwealth Law
  • Northern Ohio Law School
     

Graduate School

Recent graduates have been admitted to the following graduate schools:

  • Indiana University  
  • George Washington University
  • Penn State University
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Minnesota 
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Practical Learning

Research

Our political science faculty are actively engaged in guiding and collaborating with undergraduate students on research, resulting in a number of scholarly presentations and publications. 

Clubs and Organizations

Enhance your communication and networking skills by participating in one or more of our student clubs, including the award-winning Forensics Team, political science student organizations, partisan student clubs, and Model United Nations.  

The CU Difference

3+3
Agreement
Commonwealth University has agreements with the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, Duquesne Law School, and Widener University Commonwealth Law School for qualified students to earn both an undergraduate degree and a law degree in six years.
Career in Government
Median annual salary of political scientists is up to $128,020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2022).
89%
Job placement
rate over the last 5 years (CU-Bloomsburg)

Program Contacts

Bosworth

Jeff Bosworth

  • Chair of the Department of History, Political Science, and Philosophy / Associate Professor
  • Mansfield
Oast

Jennifer Oast

  • Professor and Assistant Chair of the Department of History, Political Science, and Philosophy
  • Bloomsburg
CommonwealthU University Employee

Robert Sandow

  • Professor/Chair, History, Politcal Science, International Studies, and Foreign Languages
  • Lock Haven
Sheng Ding

Sheng Ding

  • Professor of Political Science
  • Bloomsburg

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