"The Political Science program cultivated my interest in public policy and equipped me with the skills needed to succeed in a challenging graduate program and find a fulfilling job in the field." — Corban Von Ouhl '13, graduate of the Masters of Public Policy program at George Mason University and now working for a Washington, D.C., consulting firm
Our faculty offers an interdisciplinary approach to the study of government, politics, and policy at the local, state, national, and international levels. You interact with a range of policy makers and opinion leaders including elected officials, journalists, and scholars engaged in public policy issues.
Our curriculum prepares you for work or graduate study in political science, public policy, and law. In addition, you sharpen your skills in computer technology, research, analysis, and writing. By working with your advisor, you develop a co-curricular experience tailored to your career aspirations. The opportunities available to you include participation in the North American Model United Nations program, study abroad, service learning, and travel courses in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. We also have a fast-track program for those who are interested in going to law school, including 3+3 agreements with UMass Law and Western New England University School of Law.
Our faculty assist with internship placements in Massachusetts, New York, and Washington, D.C. Our partnership with The Washington Center provides students with a variety of internship opportunities and the chance to spend a semester or summer in the nation’s capital. Further, the department has competitive scholarship money to help students make this unique experience a financially viable option
The active Political Science Club offers you a forum for discussing contemporary issues and participating in elections. Each spring, high-achieving students are invited to join the MCLA chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society.
The close working relationships our faculty members have with experts in the field give you the opportunity to learn from practitioners. Students and faculty in the department work together in planning the annual Public Policy Lecture Series, which brings high profile speakers to campus. Some past speakers include, former Arizona Senator Jeff Flake, author Ta-Nehisi Coates, cybersecurity analyst Clint Watts, journalist Cokie Roberts (pictured left), Secretary of State John Kerry, Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, writer and activist Gloria Steinem, Ambassador Andrew Young, New York Times columnist David Brooks, journalist and author Bob Woodward, Dr. Robert Gates, former U.S. Secretary of Defense, Zainab Salbi (top of page), author and co-founder of Women to Women International, and immigration activist and journalist Jose Antonio Vargas.
Launched in 2014, the Conflict Prevention and Resolution Speaker Series seeks to provide the MCLA and Northern Berkshire communities with a forum to better understand sources of world conflicts and explore paths to resolve them.
Do high-pressure scenarios get your adrenaline pumping? Do you often read political news and then ponder what you would do if you had been in the same situation? Are you interested in time travel—past, present, or both?
The newest president of MCLA’s Political Science Club, Joseph Bellas ’20, double majors in history and political science. Also on the Student Activities Council (SAC), he serves as the Saturday Night Spotlight Chair. “I would definitely recommend the College to others, as there are a lot of unique opportunities here, and many ways to get involved.”