Political Science Department
We aim to help our students become thoughtful and active citizens, critical consumers of information, and analytical/theoretical thinkers. We also are committed to developing the skills of good writing, effective oral presentation, and information literacy.
Our curriculum will allow you to explore political issues in the United States and around the world through courses ranging from the US Congress or Presidency to courses on Russia or Terrorism to politics of developing nations, human rights or the global environment. You can delve into political theory by reading and discussing Socrates, Hobbes, Machiavelli, Richard Rorty, and more. You can explore issues in international relations and foreign policy or the United Nations and NATO. You can learn about constitutional law or the role of religion in politics. In addition, our faculty occasionally offers special topics classes to look at issues that are not covered by regularly scheduled courses.
In your classes, you will engage in active discussions, simulations, critical thinking, and extensive writing. We want to challenge you academically and provide the guidance you need to excel.
In addition, we encourage you to engage in academic inquiry during the summers by participating in Summer Research at Denison. Each summer, over 100 students stay on campus to work closely with professors and other students. Recent departmental summer research projects include:
- "Political Redistricting and its Representation of Popular Will," Robert Moore;
- "Spaces of Coercion, Spaces of Resistance: Africian American Contestations of Citizenship in the Antebellum and Gilded Age," Erik Singh;
- "The Czech Presidency of the European Union and the Lisbon Treaty: Critical Junctures and the Challenge of Leadership." Michelle Tverdosi;
- "Recognition as Intervention in Civil conflict: The Case Studies of Kosovo and East Timor," Leslie Marshall.
Many of our students pursue internships in the summer as well either through one of the programs mentioned below or through their own efforts or those of Career Services. Using your summers wisely to gain new skills and knowledge is strongly encouraged.
The Department also participates in a variety of interdisciplinary and co-curricular experiences. The The Lugar Program combines coursework at Denison with a congressional internship. The American University Washington Semester program provides an opportunity for students to spend one semester studying in Washington D.C. while engaging in an internship. In addition, the May Term program provides opportunities for many other off-campus educational experiences. On-campus, the Political Science Department has interdisciplinary links with the Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE), Environmental Studies, International Studies, and Honors Program.
Denison’s political science graduates have an extraordinary track record of success in a variety of areas. Recent graduates are working at: Booz, Allen, Hamilton, SAIC, and Deloitte; lobbying firms such as Lewis-Burke Associates and Patton Boggs, LLP; the US Foreign Service; several Congressional offices and Congressional committee staffs; National Public Radio; Deutsche Bank; McGraw Hill; the Ohio Legislative Service Commission; and more. Others go on to some form of post-graduate education, mostly law school and master’s programs, for example, recent graduates have attended the Elliott School at GWU, the Fletcher School at Tufts, Columbia University’s Master’s in non profit management, New York University, the London School of Economics, the University College of Swansea, the MBA program at Case Western, the University of Chicago, Emory University School of Law, Case Western law, Drake University Law School, Georgetown Law, Duquesne Law, and others. And a small number have pursued/are pursuing a Ph.D. in political science (they have gone on to attend OSU, Vanderbilt, and Wisconsin-Madison). Our majors have also earned Denison Presidential medals, Fulbright grants, and Charles B. Rangel Fellowships.
We are proud of our department, and proud of our university. There is much more I could say about it, but I want you to know that we have many wonderful opportunities waiting for you here. The close relationship you can develop with your faculty and your peers at Denison will last you a lifetime. I hope you have a chance to visit us, and drop by the department. We would be happy to see you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate contact me.
Sue Davis, Chair, Department of Political Science