Professor speaking with hands out and a large bookshelf in the background
Home Academics Schools Department of History and Political Science Political Science Major

Political Science Major

Law, public policy and more

Plan to go to law school? Interested in getting your master’s in public policy or master’s in public administration? A major in political science might be perfect for you.

What to Expect

  • Challenge yourself to think critically about complex issues, theories, and current events. Learn how to analyze political phenomena from multiple perspectives, evaluate arguments and evidence, and develop your own informed opinions.
  • The department’s faculty are active and award-winning scholars who take teaching seriously and work closely with students to plan their courses of study and their careers.
  • Opportunities to engage in internships and research projects that allow you to apply your knowledge and skills in a professional setting.


Political science courses interrogate the processes by which communities decide what is important and what should be done by engaging in critical analysis of the institutions, policies and philosophies of the collective problem-solving processes known as governance.

Politics & Government in the United States

Introduction to American politics, covering the development of American democracy, relations between the states and the federal government, elections, the role of the media, the three branches of national government, and current public policy.

Media & Politics

Examination of the role of mass media in American politics. Topics include the effect of journalistic norms on political news, the impact of new media technologies from newspapers to the Internet, media objectivity, and the effect of media on political reasoning and behavior.

Contemporary Political Thought

Examination of the origins and development of contemporary notions of freedom, democracy and equality from Nietzsche to contemporary political philosophy. Topics include liberalism, libertarianism and post-modern political thought. 

Specific requirements for this major can be found in the College Catalog.

Required Courses Meet the Faculty


Through the Washington Center’s Academic Internship Program, you’ll be matched with an internship related to your interests, participate in career workshops and networking events to develop your professional skills and complete an academic course in the evening.


Pursue careers in government services, international organizations, law, museum and archival work, religion, or secondary and higher education. Our alumni have landed in places such as circuit courts, United States
Capitol Police, Commonwealth’s Attorney offices, Academy of the United States Veterans, Department of State, Bureau of Diplomatic Security, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, University of Virginia Center for Politics, and Duquesne University School of Law. Their career paths include:

  • Law Clerk
  • Director of Operations
  • Deputy Political Coordinator
  • Police Sergeant
  • Academic Advisor
  • Clerk of Court
  • Senior Analyst
  • Policy Coordinator
  • Associate Attorney
  • JAG Officer

Chart your path

Learn more about employment and advancement in the field of political science from the American Political Science Association.

As a political science major with an English minor, Marshall Miller was active on campus and also sought out opportunities to gain real-world experience. He was an RA, was involved with College Republicans, and as part of Student Senate held the positions of Vice President junior year and President during his senior year. His work with a voter registration drive on campus led to him working on campaigns for the Republican Party of VA while still in school, first as a turf coordinator and then as a field organizer, a full-time paid position. During the spring of his senior year, Marshall moved to Washington D.C. to complete an internship with the advocacy group Log Cabin Republicans, returning to campus one day a week to meet with professors. After graduation, Marshall worked as a Research Analyst for the Republican National Committee Communications Department. He is now a Senior Associate in Client Relations with the DDC Public Affairs firm in D.C.

A political science and communication studies double-major with a minor in Spanish, Kelly Deibler was a student ambassador, a lifeguard, and was involved in Cru Campus Ministry, student government, and the Spanish Club. She was awarded the Dr. David K. McQuilkin Endowed Scholarship and the Daniel W. Bly–Lamar B. Neal Award for her outstanding work in political science at Bridgewater. Studying abroad for a semester in Chile allowed Kelly to improve her language skills, which she was able to use in volunteer opportunities. While at Bridgewater she volunteered at NewBridges Immigrant Resources Center and at the after-school program at Covenant Presbyterian Church. Kelly remembers this as being “the most impactful part of my college experience,” helping her round out her education. After graduation, Kelly moved to South Korea, where she taught English for a couple of years. She then went to law school at George Mason University, and now works as a Judicial Law Clerk for Judge Leslie Southwick of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

A political science major with a minor in communications, Chris Obenshain was involved in
student senate, the forensics and debate team, and the Screamin’ Eagles Pep Band. While at BC, Chris interned with a U.S. Senate campaign based in Richmond. This internship turned into a job opportunity on Capitol Hill, where Chris worked for a couple of years before earning his JD from the
University of Virginia School of Law. He clerked on the Virginia Court of Appeals and then worked as a prosecutor before moving on to working for the Virginia Attorney General’s Office. Chris currently works as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Montgomery County, Virginia. He has also served in the United States
Army Reserve for 18 years, where he is currently a JAG Officer holding the rank of Major. Chris believes that the most important skill he developed in college was how to analyze problems, not just memorize facts, which he attributes to the liberal arts education at Bridgewater College. He also recognizes Bridgewater College’s impact on his career, both in providing career path options and in fostering the lifelong learning and interest in public service which have been key to his career.

Image Not Found

Enhancing Voter Education and Engagment

Students at Bridgewater College will have more opportunities to get involved in voter education and registration thanks to Dr. Bobbi Gentry, Associate Professor of Political Science at BC.

Related Programs

  • Want to pursue a career or graduate study in international relations or security studies? Add a global studies minor to your political science degree.
  • If you’re interested in graduate study or a career in environmental policy, consider adding either a major in biology or environmental science.
  • If you plan to pursue graduate study or a career in criminal justice or public safety, add the crime and justice minor in the sociology department.