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Political Science

Overview of Program

The study of political science prepares students for a wide variety of careers in federal, state and local government; public administration; law; community advocacy; or within the private sector. Hood College has a long-standing tradition of preparing students for involvement and leadership in political issues and organizations. The network of Hood alumni currently working in the public and private sectors is extensive, both in the Washington, D.C., area and nationally.

The political science major covers four primary areas:

  • U.S. Politics and Policy
  • Comparative Politics and International Relations (including national security and terrorism)
  • Law
  • Political Theory

There is also the possibility of completing a political science or global studies minor if students choose to major in another area. Many students also choose to double major in a field such as economics, foreign languages or history.


Internships are highly recommended and are available with a wide variety of organizations. Hood's location near Washington, D.C., and Annapolis, the capital of Maryland, offers numerous internship opportunities with governmental agencies. And in Frederick, the county seat, intern- ships with county and local government agencies are widely available. Students typically earn 3 to 15 credits during their internship experience. Internships can also be completed during the Washington Semester at American University (see below).

In recent years, Hood's political science majors have interned at locations such as:

  • Amnesty International
  • Center for Democracy
  • Frederick City Government
  • Frederick County Government
  • Housing Trust of Frederick
  • Maryland Attorney General (Frederick County Office)
  • Maryland Commission on Human Relations
  • Maryland General Assembly
  • Maryland State Senate
  • U.S. House of Representatives
  • White House

Hood participates in the Washington Semester program with American University. Students may choose to focus on topics such as justice, public law, foreign policy or a number of related fields. Students take one course at American University and complete an extensive internship program. During the Washington Semester, which is typically completed during the junior or senior year, students live in the residence halls at American University.

Study Abroad Opportunities

Students are encouraged to take advantage of the many study abroad opportunities available through Hood College. The most popular pro- grams take students to Spain, France and London.

The ability to live and study in another country provides a life-changing experience, and the perspectives gained will help students regardless of their future career or graduate school plans.

Model United Nations

The Hood College Model U.N. program is open to all students who are interested in global studies. Students participate regularly in simulation activities and send delegations to the Model U.N. program in New York City—the largest in the country. Recent countries represented include North Korea, Sri Lanka and Maldives. Students can earn one credit for their participation in a course and the simulation.

Maryland Student Legislation Simulation

Hood offers students the opportunity to gain experience in passing legis- lation as they simulate this process in the Maryland Student Legislature program. Students go to Annapolis each spring and debate bills in the state capitol. Students can earn one credit for their participation in this simulation.

Clubs and Honorary Societies

Hood has a chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society. In addition, for students interested in the political process, Hood offers a College Democrats Club and a College Republicans Club.

Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN)

The Department of History and Political Science coordinates the par- ticipation of Hood College students in public policy programs hosted by PLEN. This organization strives to prepare women for careers in public policy. PLEN hosts an annual series of seminars and internships on the public policy process. The seminars take place in Washington, D.C., and include topics relating to women and public policy, science and technol- ogy policy and international policy issues.

Alumni Success Stories

Graduates of Hood's political science program are currently working for federal, state and local governments; nonprofit organizations; and public interest advocacy groups. They are working directly in politics—hold- ing elected office, serving as Capitol Hill staff members and campaign managers and working in many areas of law and legal analysis. Hood political science alumni are also pursuing graduate study and attending law school and other professional programs at many universities, includ- ing Rutgers, Northeastern, Carnegie Mellon, American, Georgetown, Howard, George Mason and Maryland.

Learn more about the major and the department.