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UNDERGRADUATE Political Science schools?

ZupchurchZupchurch Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
edited September 2010 in College Search & Selection
I am currently looking for some great schools and I intend on majoring in Political Science.
I am currently a Junior at my high school and am about to take the SAT/ACT, so I do not currently have those statistics.

I do have a 4.5 GPA, weighted of course, am in AP Calculus as a Junior, am in all AP classes this year with the exception of an Honors Chemistry course (required) and Student Government.

Next year I should be the Student Body President for my High School and may also possibly be one of 3 state Presidents for Arizona (Of Student Governement) . (That is if I decide to run and if I win)

What colleges would I be able to get into and how good are their programs in Political Science?
How much does becoming one of 3 State Presidents improve my chances into getting into these colleges?


I also currently have a job at Baskin Robbins. (Funny, I know)
I plan on getting involved in helping politicians in my area (Republicans) seeing as that is what I want to get into when I am older.

Also, if it helps, I was starting Lacrosse Goalie for my high school my Freshman and Sophomore year (and led the team to our first semi-finals) and Captain of Varsity for my Sophomore year as well. I decided against playing this year and the next, but it was not like our team was recognizable anyways.
Post edited by Zupchurch on

Replies to: UNDERGRADUATE Political Science schools?

  • ZupchurchZupchurch Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
    Bumping this because there has only been one answer. (via PM, thanks!)
  • VASkinsFan08VASkinsFan08 Registered User Posts: 118 Junior Member
    If you want the best undergrad education in poli science i would recommend applying to a few ivies (Colombia, Cornell) which seems doable with your stats but depends really on SAT/ACT scores, and schools like: Georgetown, Duke, UMich, UNC-Chapel Hill, UVA, UCLA, UC-Berkeley
    BUT if you're thinking of going into a good grad school, i would not recommend simply going to the highest ranked school you can get into, rather go to a flagship state school or another school that offers you good financial aid, since grad schools don't care too much about the prestige of your undergrad degree, and they can be very expensive. Ignore this paragraph if money is not an issue at all.
  • ZupchurchZupchurch Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
    Thanks for your reply!
    I wouldn't be able to get any financial aide, as far as I am concerned, because my family is fairly well off.

    I have been looking into those schools, particularly Georgetown University. I really enjoy the big cities and that the college is close to the White House, etc. so I can always have something to look at.

    Do you believe it would be a "reach" to be accepted at Georgetown or do you think I could get in?

    Any other colleges that you all recommend?

    I have read via a couple of sources that it may be better to attend a college outside of Washington D.C. if you wish to get into Politics and eventually run for office one day. Does anyone have an opinion on that?

  • AlexandreAlexandre Super Moderator Posts: 24,125 Super Moderator
    Do not confuse Political Science with International Relations. Georgetown's strength is International Relations, not so much Political Science. Although Georgetown has a good Political Science Department, there are several other, significantly better, Political Science departments, such as:

    Columbia University
    Cornell University
    Duke University
    Emory University
    Harvard University
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    New York University
    Northwestern University
    Princeton University
    Stanford University
    University of California-Berkeley
    University of California-Los Angeles
    University of California-San Diego
    University of Chicago
    University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
    University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
    University of Rochester
    Washington University-St Louis
    Yale University

    Other universities that have excellent Political Science departments that would be virtual safeties for the OP are Michigan State and Ohio State.
  • ZupchurchZupchurch Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
    Thanks for your input and for listing some of those colleges, but how much of a reach are all of those? I knew Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, Columbia, and Yale all had good programs but I didn't think I would be accepted. How much of a reach are most of those schools and what do I need to shoot for on my SAT and ACT in order to get into those colleges?
  • ZupchurchZupchurch Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
    Bumping this up to get more input.
  • jessiehljessiehl Registered User Posts: 3,328 Senior Member
    You're good at math, apparently. It's a reach for everyone, but I'd suggest that you look at MIT. The poli sci program is excellent. And for an anecdote of success ;)...I have a friend who got a degree from the MIT poli sci program, who is now a research assistant to a senator from his home state (a Republican).

    Also, if you got involved in volunteering for Republican politicians in metro Boston, of all places, it would get you used to working on hostile ground, which would probably look impressive and help your career in the long run (says the liberal activist metro-Bostonian). :)
  • shennieshennie Registered User Posts: 2,467 Senior Member
    Two other schools that are very strong in Political Science that will be matches for you are University of Rochester and University of Wisconsin.
  • Sparkeye7Sparkeye7 Registered User Posts: 2,466 Senior Member
    Ohio, historically served as the hub between the east and the west based on the Northwest Ordinance of 1787 had yielded 7 U.S. Presidents (the most in the country). In terms of American Civil War, the Union's top three generals–Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman, and Philip Sheridan were all from Ohio. Its capital - Columbus is the home to The Ohio State University with American Politics Program ranked consistently in the Top-5 by the USNWR.

    Go Bucks! :)
  • agc0319agc0319 User Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 229 Junior Member
    Truman State University.

    According to John Wahlke, the former president of the American Political Science Association, it's the best undergraduate program he's ever seen.
  • snoopydog1snoopydog1 Registered User Posts: 196 Junior Member
    Really depends on your sat scores. Have you even just taken a practice test, so we can gauge what your range is?

    Lets say you get 2200+, you want to aim for the ivies of course. Unless you want to be iN DC. In that case, look for Georgetown, George Mason, American University, and GWashingington University. If you don't reach that 2200 mark, these later ones, (excluding Gtown) would likely accept you anyway, as they aren't as "well respected".

    I say, if politics is REALLY your thing, and you know it 100%, you should probably try to be as close to DC as possible, so you can stay informed, get involved, and be right in all the action. Think about what type of politics you want to get involved in though, state, federal, behind the scenes as political operative, or an office holder. This has a major role in what you major in, so say, if you wanted to work as a polit. operative, you would want to also major in communications. Think all this through as well, and don't just get caught up on a school's "brand name."

    Make sure you take whatever other subject tests you need to take as well, for the colleges you apply too.

    If you want to go to grad school, you might want to also consider grade deflation and work load, and the type of environment you work best in. If you can handle tremendous stress and impossible work load and still have 3.5+ gpa.. go for the ivies. But, if you know you'd do better in a less oppressive environment, go for a more liberal school. Don't forget about Brandeis!

    I wouldn't stress about this too much, your a good student, which means you'll do decent on the sats, probably. Even if you don't do stellar, it might turn out for the best, as you would get into a great school (granted not ivy) near the action, or where you can excel more freely and probably have a better overall experience in the process.
    Hope i helped... keep us posted!
  • omgcollegeahhhhomgcollegeahhhh Registered User Posts: 21 New Member
    THIS IS SO CREEPY. this year, i was a junior in ap calc, all my classes were ap's except for student government and chem, and i'm also varsity lacrosse goalie. and i'm going to be sga president next year. i also ran for state sga president (and lost). OMG. the only thing that doesn't match me here is that my gpa is a 4.3 weighted, not a 4.5
  • bisurgebisurge Registered User Posts: 35 Junior Member
    Eh, post is a little late, but for political science name matters a lot. That means Ivies are usually going to be better for a political science major.
    Also, I don't know how you could get a 4.5 GPA and get below a 2200 on the SAT. In our school people with 4.1 GPAs still get above 2200s; I think one person with a 3.8 got a 2210 or something like that (though I guess the difficulty of classes differ between schools).
This discussion has been closed.