As someone thinking about going to college or a new college student, you may be contemplating a major such as a political science degree and wondering if it’s a good investment of your time and money. The answers people give you may vary. While it’s true that liberal studies and social science majors may have less job security or wages than other in-demand fields of study, a degree in political science can certainly be worth it in terms of return on investment and pay off. It is important, however, that you approach your studies strategically in order to increase your chances of finding a job that meets your needs upon graduation. Follow these tips to get the most out of your degree.
Research and Explore
The first thing you’ll want to do is research your intended career. If you haven’t chosen one particular job, that’s okay. You can begin by investigating the field of political science as a whole. Begin by finding articles online or, better yet, visit the career services office at your school. Possible career paths for those with a degree in political science include jobs in civil service, public administration, international affairs, teaching, political campaign work, law and journalism, among many more. A career counselor can help you to research the field even further by checking out anticipated job growth and statistics. Some jobs are at a standstill in general, while others may require geographic relocation in order to find work. Learning these things now will help you make an educated decision regarding whether to pursue a political science degree. You can explore other majors or even specializations in political science by taking coursework in your areas of interest. Keep an open mind when undergoing career exploration.
Network and Get Involved
Potential employers look for candidates who were involved in extra-curricular activities during college. Whether it’s a club, sport or even a Greek organization, getting involved offers exposure to a lot of new people and teaches you a variety of skills. For example, you’ll gain leadership experience, enhance your interpersonal skills and improve upon your communication by being a member of an organization. Being on a team or other organized activity also shows that you can manage your time and prioritize. In addition, the people you meet in college can become lifelong connections that can lead to any number of opportunities. It’s not just classmates who can benefit you. Taking time to interact with professors and other authority figures can provide you with tons of great information as well as a future job reference.
Take an Internship
Whether it’s required for your political science major or not, take advantage of an internship opportunity. Getting real world experience will help you to pinpoint your career path and will teach you things about your field that you couldn’t learn in the classroom. It will also set you apart from the competition in a crowded job market. You may also gain a foot in the door by taking time to get to know your internship supervisor and other key players on the job. Always go above and beyond at your internship in order to gain the most from the experience.