| Major Areas of Study: POLITICAL SCIENCE
Political science seeks to explain the political order in societies, power, political organizations, decision-making processes and their outcomes. Relations among citizens, the processes in and among institutions in the United States and in societies around the world and the relations among the nations of the world are the focus of the study of political science at Muskingum University.
Most of these positions are within governmental organizations, such as, city, county, or state offices, the state legislature, city or state agencies. In the past few years, a number of opportunities have been created within the Zanesville (OH) city government structure, and similar positions are in the works for the city of Cambridge. Other opportunities include political campaign organizations and political party organizations. Some are held in the private sector, such as labor unions, the state and national bar associations, and businesses, where interns will work at the interface of the organization and the political world.
Political Science majors are able to work collaboratively in various research capacities with faculty. For example, Dr. Walter Huber has taken students to professional conferences in Boston, Atlanta, and New Orleans. Fifteen Muskingum students were published last year as Political Science undergraduates in professional works. The department has also participated in the Muskingum Summer Fellows program for the past four years. Last summer, two students worked with Dr. Huber and Dr. Van Horn (Geology), putting together an interactive GIS map of the Cambridge (OH) Downtown that will be hosted by the city on the internet.
Pi Sigma Alpha is the political science honorary promoting scholarship in political science. PSA's goal is to provide the entire campus community with a framework within which to study government and public policy issues. This goal is achieved by hosting speakers, and fostering scholarly interaction between faculty and students, and promoting community service.
The Political Science department employs 2-3 students per year as department assistants. In addition, students also have access to five paid internship slots each semester and during the summer.
Students attend professional conferences with faculty and have co-authored papers with them at the Ohio Economics and Political Science Conference, American Political Science Association’s Annual Meeting and the Southern Political Science Association’s Annual Meeting.
Through a cooperative agreement with American University, selected students may spend one semester in Washington, D.C. studying the American governmental system in action. Assignments may include the State Department, lobbying groups, or Capitol Hill. Study is carried out through a seminar, an individual research project, and regular courses at American University.
Model United Nations
Students and faculty attend the American Model United Nations Conference every November. At the three-day conference this past fall, the students participated in a wide range of activities that closely model the operation of the United Nations itself. Simulated sessions included the Security Council, an Historical Security Council (1993) and General Assembly Plenary sessions on subjects including disarmament and international security, economic and financial affairs, social, humanitarian and cultural issues and legal affairs.
Career Possibilities for Political Science Majors
Recent Political Science graduates have also enrolled in the following graduate schools:
- Miami University
- Ohio University
- Cleveland State University
- Syracuse University
- Case Western
Carter Eberwine of Coshocton, Ohio, graduatde this past spring (2014) with a B.S. degree in Chemistry, Biology, Political Science, and German.
Carter chose Muskingum because he felt the small class sizes would provide “opportunities for me to build good student-professor relationships and strive in my classes.” He also hoped the small campus community would allow him to gain leadership positions.
Carter is the president of his fraternity, the Stag Club; a member of Tri-Beta (Biology Honorary), Pi Sigma Alpha (Political Science Honorary), Lambda Sigma (Sophomore Honorary), and ODK, the junior-senior honorary. He also formerly served on Student Senate.
This past summer, Carter spent two months interning in a hospital in Munich, Germany, where he worked in the gastroenterology department on a project that was “aimed toward correlating obesity and diet with the severity of chronic esophageal inflammation and Barrett’s Esophagus.” Carter found the internship by e-mailing research hospitals in Germany and asking if they were able to accept interns.
His internship in Germany is not the only travel experience Carter has had. In the summer of 2012, he traveled for two months in Europe. Carter explains: “In the United Kingdom and Germany I distributed surveys for my senior seminar in Political Science. This project was entitled ‘Which Factors Most Influence Europeans’ Opinions on the United States?’ and the survey tested four different variables that were hypothesized to have an effect on these opinions. The research was successful and I was invited to present my paper at the Midwest Political Science Association’s annual conference in Chicago, Illinois.”
Before coming to Muskingum, Carter says, he “did not realize that so many international opportunities or leadership positions existed here.