Politics & International Affairs

Office: E370 Thompson Hall

(716) 673-3207

David Rankin, Chairperson

Email: political.science@fredonia.edu

Website: http://www.fredonia.edu/department/polisci/


The Department of Politics and International Affairs offers a major or minor in Political Science and a major or minor in International Studies. 

A degree in Political Science is a liberal arts discipline designed to prepare students as informed citizens and leaders in the public and private sector.  Fredonia graduates hold responsible positions from local to international levels of government and politics, policy, business, journalism, education, numerous and diverse careers across the United States and abroad. Many of our alumni continue their studies in graduate or law school. Our department offers a wide array of courses and specialization across American politics, comparative politics, international relations, public law and political theory. Areas of specialization include U.S. foreign policy, Latin American politics, European politics, media and politics, constitutional law, elections, Congress, the presidency, public administration, public policy and many other areas. 

We encourage students to enhance and apply their learning on and off campus. Students participate in study abroad, for a full semester or for shorter trips of two to three weeks. Many students earn academic credit while interning in Washington, DC or Albany for the summer or a full semester.  Others participate in the Model European Union across New York State and in Europe. Still others participate in local and regional internship opportunities to earn academic credit through their work on political campaigns, in governmental agencies, offices, and an assortment of organizations. Many students are actively involved in campus leadership and initiatives with the Political Science Association and as part of numerous other student group activities on campus, in the community, and region. 

The Department also provides the Interdisciplinary Studies - International Studies major and minor programs. See International Studies for program information.

Awards, Activities and Organizations


The department is a member of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national Political Science Honor Society. Outstanding undergraduates are encouraged to apply, and need not be political science majors to qualify for membership.

Fredonia also operates a chapter of Sigma Iota Rho, honor society for International Studies. Students who are interested in membership should contact the coordinator of the International Studies program.

The Department offers scholarships to entering freshmen, based on merit: the Political Science Alumni Scholarship, the Politics & International Affairs Faculty Scholarship and a J.R. Soukup Freshmen Award.

The Department annually gives the Erna G. and J. Murdoch Dawley Award to the outstanding graduating senior. A J.R. Soukup Pi Sigma Alpha Award is given annually to the outstanding junior.  The department awards the John R. Quatroche Jr. Award to a Political Science student who demonstrates an outstanding record of involvement in extracurricular affairs, campus service and leadership.  The Jon and Wilma Kraus Award recognizes students excelling in both Political Science and International Studies.  The James Hurtgen Scholarship provides assistance to students interning in Washington, DC.