Home : Academics : Political Science



Jong Oh Ra, chair
(540) 362-7124

Hollins University
P.O. Box 9702
Roanoke, VA 24020

Political theory. Political action.

At Hollins, the political science major is a rich and dynamic course of study that prepares students for employment in fields such as law, journalism, international business, and public service. The major emphasizes the relationship between politics in theory and politics in action. You can practice what you learn in the classroom both on and off campus.

  • Student government committees
  • Honor Court
  • Student newspaper
  • University Democrats
  • University Republicans
  • Green Party
  • Independent Party
  • Black Student Alliance
  • Voice
  • Gay and Lesbian Student Alliance
  • STAND (Anti-genocide coalition)
  • The political science newsletter


Tailor the major to fit your interests

Political science has two areas of focus:

  • International politics, which encompasses comparative politics, international relations, and political theory
  • American politics

In addition students can, with the guidance of their departmental advisor, opt to develop a special interest such as the American judicial system, Latin American politics, or gender in politics.

Hollins also offers a minor program of study in social justice. More info »


Sharpen your skills with meaningful research

In addition to giving you a broad background in political science, we help you develop as a thinker, researcher, and writer. For example, one recent graduate combined a Russian literature and political science major to write a thesis on the aftereffects of Perestroika. Another compared the application of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to African Americans and to women in gender-related cases. Yet another gathered data on black voting registration figures in every county in South Carolina. Now she applies this tenaciousness and imagination to her field of financial management.


Test career waters with hands-on internships

Internships, an integral part of a Hollins University education, will give you entrees into careers. The faculty have extensive contacts in law, government, and nongovernmental organizations that connect Hollins students to internships each January, some of which include:

  • U.S. Congress
  • White House
  • Virginia Commonwealth government
  • Public Defender's Office, Roanoke
  • Law enforcement
  • Private attorneys, in Roanoke, regionally, and out of state
  • Prosecutorial offices
  • Planned Parenthood
  • Legal Aid Society


Expand your horizons with study abroad

Study abroad can be invaluable to political science majors because it provides insights into the political systems of other countries. Hollins directs two international study programs of its own, one in Paris and one in London.

Study abroad

  • Paris
  • London
  • Ireland
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Spain
  • Italy
  • Greece
  • Argentina
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • South Africa