Careers & Internships
Political science prepares students for a variety of career opportunities, building the balanced and sophisticated skill set necessary for today’s globalized economy. At Kent State University, we encourage our students to follow course work aligned to their interests, and offer four tracks in Political Science to better prepare them for their chosen career path. We also encourage our students to intern. Our Washington Program in National Issues and Columbus Program in Intergovernmental Issues provide challenging, semester-long internships for students looking for hands-on experience with the political world. The University also offers opportunities for study abroad in Geneva and Florence, programs which benefit many of our majors. We are committed to the success of our students, and take pride in the contributions our graduates make.
Reflecting the benefits that come with a liberal arts education, our students develop strong writing and presentation skills, are able to synthesize and analyze information, and project feasible outcomes. Students of political science take these skills into the world of policy, learning to look at the ways in which policy and implementation impact our lives. These skills make our students competitive in a range of careers, as is evidenced by the success of our alumni.
Students of political science may opt for careers as professional politicians or as political campaign consultants. Others work in public service, for instance as policy analysts or program managers. Graduates of Kent State’s Political Science program have worked domestically and abroad as civil servants, implementing policies in Ohio, Washington and overseas. Other students may choose legal careers by way of law school, studying international or domestic law. Many graduates go into the private sector, for instance working as analysts in the corporate world. Additionally, students may choose to follow a career in international business by combining work in political science with study in economics or business. The starting median salary for a Political Science undergraduate is $41,300. That is more than majors in Business Administration, Business Management, Information Technology, Biology, and Psychology. (For list of median and mid-career salaries click here.)
Some political science majors pursue graduate study in the field, entering M.A., M.P.A. (Masters of Public Administration) or Ph.D. programs. These advanced degrees open doors to a variety of career paths from policy administration and political consulting to academia.
For additional information, you can read through “Careers in Political Science," by the American Political Science Association, or obtain a copy of Careers and the Study of Political Science: A Guide for Undergraduates from the Department in Bowman 302. You may also wish to make an appointment with our Undergraduate Advisor, Dr. Julie Mazzei, to discuss your ideas and options. The links below will also provide more information about our internship programs and our alumni successes.