Politics & Government

Nothing is more important to a healthy society than the process by which a community decides what common goals it wants to achieve, what its rules will be and how those policies and rules will be carried out. That is the essence for studying political science. Pacific University's Department of Politics and Government provides skills and habits of mind useful in a wide range of professions. The course work also provides an excellent foundation for graduate study in political science.

Program Highlights

  • Challenging, intensive curriculum that reflects a concern with the improvement and transformation of local, national and global communities
  • Local and national internships
  • Study abroad opportunities
  • Meaningful senior thesis project
  • Professors who are involved not only in the University, but in many outside activities
  • Strong ties to the Tom McCall Center for Policy Innovation


The goals of our curriculum are to develop in students a broad knowledge of political phenomena, practical skills of analysis and communication, and an understanding of theoretical approaches to politics. Courses delve into the politics of the United States and the world, including topics related to the environment, the media, civil rights, social change, religion, socialism, conservatism and other contemporary issues. The department takes seriously George Orwell’s mantra that “all issues are political issues,” offering courses on the history of political development in regions around the world, protest and its suppression, economic markets, dictatorships and security.


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The department strongly encourages students to include a semester off-campus experience. Many of the students majoring in politics and government find internships in the Oregon Legislature or Congressional offices in Washington, D.C. Other opportunities are available in social service and government agencies, interest groups or law firms.

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