About Us

Contact

GVSU Political Science Department

plsdept@gvsu.edu

Phone: 616-331-2320

1121 AuSable Hall
1 Campus Dr
Allendale, MI 49401-9403

International Relations and Political Science on Facebook

Our Facebook Alumni Group

Why GVSU Political Science?

Faculty

  • Our courses are taught by professors, not graduate students.
  • The department is staffed with PhDs from top graduate programs.
  • Our focus is undergraduate education.
  • Multiple professors have won awards for their teaching.
  • Professors are published experts in their subfields.

Skill Development

  • Small class sizes enable skill development:
    • Critical thinking
    • Research
    • Data analysis
    • Digital literacy
    • Writing
    • Oral communication
  • Many classes feature debates, simulations and real-world problem solving.
  • Study abroad and improve your cross-cultural communication and problem-solving skills.

Flexible Programs

  • Majors choose from a wide range of courses.
  • Choice of BA (language) or BS (statistics and research methods).
  • 36 credit, flexible major enables students to pursue double major if they prefer.
  • Minor options: general political science and a teachable minor for education.
  • We offer many courses for General Education.

Internships

  • Internships available locally, in Lansing, and throughout the state
  • Internships available in DC through our affiliation with the Washington Center

Careers or Graduate School

  • Many career options
  • Excellent preparation for a wide range of graduate programs

Spotlights

Selma Tucker

Grad Works for City of Grand Rapids

Mollie Smith

Student Founds Breast Cancer Awareness Organization.

Adam Hukkula

First-year Student Interns for MI House Democrats

Abby Oliver

Abby Oliver Presents Honors Thesis Research at MPSA

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Mission and Vision

Mission – Political Science Department

The mission of the Department of Political Science is to prepare students for citizenship, post-baccalaureate education and professional careers through a wide range of course offerings, advising, internships, and experience in local, state, national and international contexts.

Vision – Political Science Department

The Department of Political Science is committed to setting a standard of excellence in the undergraduate study of Political Science. Students gain comprehensive knowledge of American and global governance and politics through coursework in American politics, political theory, comparative politics and international relations. We prepare students to be well-informed citizens and to make meaningful contributions to local, state, national, and international communities. We foster a diverse community engaged in inquiry, expression, and rigorous scholarship.

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.

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.

CLAS

The Department of Political Science and the International Relations Program are part of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Events

THE GLOBAL EXPRESS: HIGHER EDUCATION AS A GLOBAL COMMODITY

January 29, 2020 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

The Global Express is a public forum on global affairs and current events on Wednesdays through the winter semester. Join us when Dr. Mark Schaub, Interim Dean for the Brooks College of interdisciplinary...

HRT Film Series: Blood Diamond

January 29, 2020 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Set during the 1990’s civil war in Sierra Leone, this film tells the story of two men, a white South African mercenary (Leonardo DiCaprio) and a black Mende fisherman (Djimon Hounsou) who form...

What Can I Do with an International Relations or Political Science Degree?

February 11, 2020 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Come hear from a panel of GVSU IR and PLS alumni about their career paths since graduating. Alumni Panelists include: Ileana Cardenas McAlary, Associate General Counsel, Wolverine Worldwide Kara...

THE GLOBAL EXPRESS: CHINA'S INTERNET CENSORSHIP AND SOCIAL CREDIT SYSTEM

February 12, 2020 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

The Global Express is a public forum on global affairs and current events on Wednesdays through the winter semester. Join us on February 12 when Dr. Meghan Cai, Assistant Professor for Modern...

HRT Film Series: On Her Shoulders

February 20, 2020 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

This documentary follows Nadia Murad, a 23-year-old reluctant human rights activist, who works tirelessly to bring international attention to the 2014 genocide of the Yazidis in Northern Iraq. A refugee...

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News

Professors Richards and Zhao Publish Study of the Chinese Legal System

December 20, 2019

Professors Mark Richards and Yi Zhao teamed up for a research project on how the legal concept of the public figure, central to libel cases in the U.S., has now spread to the Chinese legal system.

DEAN ANNOUNCES COMMENCEMENT MARSHALS FOR FALL 2019

November 26, 2019

Dean Fred Antczak is pleased to announce that serving as commencement marshals will be Professor Polly Diven of Political Science and Jeff Kelly Lowenstein of the School of Communication.

International Relations Students Simulate Response to Calamitous Global Event

November 18, 2019

International Relations Students Simulate Response to Calamitous Global Event

Paul B. Henry Internship Announcement

September 30, 2019

Paul B. Henry Internship

GV Students Spend Summer Interning in DC

September 27, 2019

GVSU Political Science and International Relations Summer 2019 Internships

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