Baldwin Wallace University Programs

BW’s political science major prepares you for careers in government, corporate, law, nonprofit, education and service sectors.

Political Science


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Department of Politics and Global Citizenship

(440) 826-2311,



Foreign policy. Human rights. National security. Civic engagement. Community development. Political science is a powerful, constantly changing career field that offers a foundation for future success.

Baldwin Wallace’s political science major prepares you for a career that spans government, corporate, law, nonprofit, education and service sectors.

In the classroom, you’ll build skills in critical thinking, problem solving, public speaking and written communication. You’ll develop academic insights and professional competencies you can apply to an internship, career, graduate school or professional studies.

Learning is dynamic when theory melds with application. Through coursework, you’ll experience simulation activities, student presentations, Socratic dialog and group projects.

Outside the classroom, you can participate in internships, service-learning, study abroad, an affiliated Semester in Washington, D.C. program, and BW's award-winning Model United Nations and Model African Union teams.

BW’s 20-minute proximity to Cleveland puts you within easy access to impressive networking, internship and job shadowing connections. These opportunities include government and non-profit agencies, Fortune 500 corporations and more.

Popular Major for Law School

Political science is a popular undergraduate major for students interested in attending law school. At BW, pre-law students benefit from comprehensive and rigorous academics, collaborative learning and experiential opportunities.

Interested in Becoming a Teacher?

If you would like to become a social studies teacher, BW offers an outstanding teacher education program.

Want to make a positive difference?

Many political science majors exemplify BW’s mission of educating “contributing, compassionate citizens.”

Versatile Career Opportunities

Many political science majors attend law school and graduate programs in business administration, education, public policy and public administration. Other individuals go directly to career placements with corporations, nonprofit agencies and service organizations. Government employment includes positions with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Secret Service, Department of Defense and employment with county and municipal governments across Ohio and nationally.

A political science student conducts a poll through the Community Research Institute

BW students gain real-world experience in applied research and training on the methodology and substance of social and political research through the BW Community Research Institute. 


  • Elected office
  • Campaign management
  • Attorney/judge
  • Community development specialist
  • Lobbyist
  • Nonprofit management
  • Public policy analyst
  • Diplomatic staff
  • Criminal justice
  • Government official
  • Political analyst
  • Teacher
  • Journalist


A comprehensive, rigorous program, political science is offered as a major and minor. The courses acquaint students with various methods of analysis available for and applicable to the study of political institutions, political thought and political behavior.

Political science is an ideal companion major or minor for students interested in education, humanities, social sciences, business administration, and international studies, among others.

The political science major prepares students to:

  • Demonstrate in-depth understanding of basic factual information about politics within the areas of specialization including but not limited to American Politics, Political Theory, International Relations, Comparative Politics and Methodology
  • Understand and be able to inter- relate the leading theories, literature and approaches in the subfields of American Politics, Political Theory, International Relations, Comparative Politics and Methods
  • Construct and articulate well-reasoned and logical arguments about political phenomena, grounded in evidence, and in multiple sub-fields on relevant issues in the discipline
  • Analyze political phenomena critically, recognize implications of diverse perspectives, normative positions and evidentiary claims
  • Conduct research into political questions using traditional library, documentary, interview sources and web-based information as well as exhibit proficiency in analyzing and interpreting their findings
  • Write clearly and persuasively about political questions, using appropriate language, and effectively use argument and evidence to communicate and support original analysis of political phenomena
  • Value civic engagement and appreciate the importance of active citizenship and working collaboratively with others
  • Develop realistic ideas for applying their knowledge and skills in meaningful employment and/or further educational opportunities after graduation through internships, independent research and other experiential learning opportunities
Course Catalog

Course Descriptions

Course descriptions, requirements for the major and additional information can be found in the University Catalog.


Experiential learning bridges classroom study with real-world opportunities. You can enhance your studies through internships, co-curricular activities and other learning opportunities that include:


Gain real-world research experience through BW’s Community Research Institute. The Institute serves government agencies and nonprofit organizations in Northeast Ohio through services that include surveys and feasibility studies. Recent projects include a study of the use of bilingual ballots for the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections and survey research for Heights Libraries, West Creek Conservancy, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District and Downtown Cleveland Alliance.


Make career contacts through an advisory committee designed just for political science, public service leadership, international affairs, national security and legal studies majors and minors. BW alumni and other professionals serve as resources for informational interviews, shadowing and other networking opportunities. Students can learn about careers in politics, community development, policy, government, law and foreign service and obtain information about attending graduate or law school.


Many students choose a semester-long internship programs based in Washington, D.C., that help them develop professional skills, earn academic credit and gain valuable job experience interning in settings that include the United States Congress, news organizations, nonprofits and law firms. Many others choose to study abroad to gain in-depth understanding of other societies and their potential as U.S. allies or potential sources of security threats.


This student group is committed to the sponsorship and promotion of events that enhance governmental involvement on campus through participation in party programs and activities for the entire student body.


This student organization welcomes conservative views and encourages students to take an interest in the world of politics through conferences, guest speakers, trips, campus activities and participation in community, state and national Republican campaigns and elections.


This non-partisan center provides information about women who have run for public office in Ohio. While serving as an historical record, the Center also is a data source for students, scholars and the general public.


A successful program in existence at BW for 40 years, Model United Nations is a series of simulations run as conferences where participating student teams from different universities learn about international diplomacy and the workings of intergovernmental organizations. The teams tackle current issues through negotiation and debate. The communication, negotiation and public speaking aspects make Model UN relevant for students of all majors. Over the years, the team and individual members of BW’s Model UN and Model African Union teams have won every award at Harvard Model UN, Model NATO, Model AU and LEIMUN, including Best Delegation.


Baldwin Wallace has long championed the success of its students. Evidence of this can be seen in the extraordinary achievements of its alumni spread throughout the United States and the world.

Kris SmeageKris Smeage ’14 is pursuing an M.P.A. at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs in New York. Kris studied at BW’s partner university in Ghana and, after graduation, worked as a government teaching assistant in France. He was BW student body president. Kris is from Spring Lake, Mich.

Sara VillarrealSara Villarreal ’14 is investigator, business due diligence, at Research Associates. At BW, Sara completed research on the congressional redistricting process with BW professor Dr. Barb Palmer. Their findings were presented at the All Politics is Local conference at Walsch University. Sara is from Willowick, Ohio.

Soundous M. EddebSundous M. Eddeb ‘13 is M.A. candidate in international relations and international economics at Johns Hopkins University. She is from Brooklyn, Ohio. An interdisciplinary curriculum paired with concentrated study in economics provided her with a valuable skill set and framework for analyzing complex global issues.

Elise WallisElise Wallis ’13 is development coordinator at The Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland. Work study, undergraduate research and leadership responsibilities through student government and Model UN/AU gave the Euclid, Ohio, native the theoretical and practical skills to land a job in her field upon graduation.

Lauren OrricoLauren N. Orrico ’11 is associate attorney at Kehoe & Associates in Cleveland. She earned a J.D. from Cleveland State University Cleveland-Marshall College of Law. As an undergraduate, she learned to think critically and consider new ideas - skills essential to her work as an attorney. Lauren is from Pittsburgh.

Samantha RobinsonSamantha Robinson ’11 is senior program coordinator for America Needs You in Chicago. Rousing classroom discussions and volunteer, leadership and study-abroad experiences helped the Mount Orab, Ohio, native discover a passion for service as an undergraduate and develop leadership and advocacy skills to succeed in the non-profit field.

Ariel A. BroughAriel A. Brough ’10 is associate attorney at Zeiger, Tigges & Little. She holds a J.D. from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law. Small class sizes, mentoring relationships with faculty and meaningful classroom debates were BW experiences that prepared her for law school. She is from Powell, Ohio.

Ben SchaeferBen Schaefer ’09 is policy specialist for the National Conference of State Legislatures in the District of Columbia. He holds a Master of Public Administration from American University. The practical and theoretical knowledge he gained at BW prepared him for an exciting career in public policy. He is from Lorain, Ohio. 

Jeremy FeadorJeremy Feador ’08 is team curator for the Cleveland Guardians. He holds an M.A. in history with a specialization in museum and archival administration from Wright State University. At BW, he completed research with faculty and local historians, an experience that has helped the North Olmsted, Ohio, native stand out in his field.

Michael RogersMichael A. Rogers ’99 is market access and compliance attaché for the U.S. Department of Commerce currently living in Brussels, Belgium. As a BW student, the Toledo, Ohio, native studied abroad in Hungary on a prestigious U.S. Government scholarship, an experience that led him to a career in diplomacy.



Haesook Chae

Director, Asian Studies Minor
Professor, Political Science
Ph.D., University of Southern California

Haesook Chae

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Lauren Copeland headshot

Associate Director, Community Research Institute
Associate Professor
Ph.D., Univ. of California, Santa Barbara

Lauren Copeland

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Jason Keiber

Assistant Professor, International Studies and National Security
Ph.D., The Ohio State University

Jason Keiber

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Barbara Palmer headshot

Professor of Political Science
Executive Director, Center for Women & Politics of Ohio
Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Barbara Palmer

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Full-Time Faculty

Javier Morales-Ortiz
Chair, Department of Politics and Global Citizenship
Associate Professor of Political Science and International Studies
Coordinator, Latin American Studies Minor
Ph.D., University of Connecticut

Haesook Chae
Director of Asian Studies Minor
Professor of Political Science
Ph.D., University of Southern California

Lauren Copeland
Associate Director, Community Research Institute
Associate Professor
Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara

Jason Keiber
Assistant Professor, International Studies and National Security
Ph.D., The Ohio State University

Mark Mattern
Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Barbara Palmer
Professor of Political Science
Legal Studies Coordinator
Creator & Executive Director of the BW Center for Women & Politics of Ohio
Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Thomas Sutton
Director, Community Research Institute (CRI)
Ph.D., Kent State University