About Us

Mission and Vision

Mission – International Relations Program

The mission of the International Relations Program, an interdisciplinary program housed in the Department of Political Science, is to prepare students for citizenship, post-baccalaureate education, and professional careers through interdisciplinary coursework in international relations, advising, and participation in internships, with an emphasis on study abroad and other international experiences.

Vision – International Relations Program

We are committed to setting a standard of excellence in the interdisciplinary undergraduate study of International Relations, including the geography, history, economics, languages and politics of global interactions. International Relations students gain comprehensive knowledge of the complex economic, social, cultural and political relationships among citizens, societies, states and international institutions. Students attain both theoretical and experiential knowledge of International Relations and critical analytic skills through study on campus and, in most cases, study abroad. We prepare students to be well-informed citizens and to make meaningful contributions to the increasingly globalized world. We foster a diverse international community engaged in inquiry, expression, and rigorous scholarship.

Spotlights

Kimberly McKenzie

Kimberly McKenzie

Assistant to U.S. Supreme Court Justice

Jamie Bash

Jamie Bash

Program Coordinator for Medical Teams International

Emily Brown

Emily Brown

Master's Student Working for State Department

David Leestma

David Leestma

Winner of Nationally Competitive Critical Language Scholarship

Richard Damstra

Richard Damstra

Foreign Service Office, U.S. Department of State

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Values

Values – Political Science and International Relations

In the Department of Political Science and the International Relations Program at Grand Valley State University, we strive toward acquiring and utilizing knowledge of Political Science and International Relations in a setting of academic freedom, methodological and theoretical pluralism, while encouraging disciplinary and interdisciplinary collaboration.

  • We value excellence in education facilitated through
    • Active student-teacher engagement and academic achievement in a rigorous and challenging course of study that emphasizes the development of critical and analytical thinking and writing.
    • Student exposure to a variety of theoretical and political perspectives for the purpose of enhancing critical and analytical thinking and writing skills.
    • A comprehensive coverage of the disciplines and access to a wide variety of upper-level courses.
    • Emphasis on internships, co-curricular and civic education opportunities in our local, state, national and global communities.
  • Excellence in faculty scholarship.
  • Service to the discipline, unit, college, university and community.
  • Student development as well-informed, global citizens in a democratic society.

News

Zac Thiel Wins PLS/IR Outstanding Paper Award

Zac Thiel Wins PLS/IR Outstanding Paper Award

April 14, 2016

Zac Thiel's paper, "Exploring the Causes of Inequality in Developed Countries" has been selected as the Outstanding Paper written in 2015.

Spring/Summer Courses 2016

Spring/Summer Courses 2016

March 16, 2016

Check out the courses offered for this Spring and Summer!

Celebrating 40 years of International Collaboration and Friendships

Celebrating 40 years of International Collaboration and Friendships

November 06, 2015

STAIR (Studies in Trans-Atlantic International Relations) is one example of the many collaborative programs and exchanges between Grand Valley and Cracow University of Economics. The two institutions are celebrating a 40-year partnership this year!

PLS 302 Winter 2016

PLS 302 Winter 2016

October 13, 2015

Interested in the politics of Planned Parenthood? The War on Women? The gender wage gap? Or women in campaign and elections? Then check out this course offering!

New U.S. citizens take oath at DeVos Center

New U.S. citizens take oath at DeVos Center

October 05, 2015

New U.S. citizens take the oath of allegiance during a naturalization ceremony at the DeVos Center September 28

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Events

There are no upcoming Events at this time

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