Program Overview

Our faculty and students bring a wide variety of experiences and perspectives into our classrooms, and we use these as an opportunity to challenge one another to deeper levels of analysis, critical thinking, and effective communication. In our classrooms, you’ll find professors and students involved in hands-on learning—examining philosophical texts, analyzing the latest election surveys, and engaging in lively, civil discussion on the most pressing issues in current affairs and the enduring questions of political life. We take education out into the world, with study away programs to Europe and Latin America and internships in Greenville, Washington, D.C., and Brussels. Our Tocqueville Program and partnership with the Riley Institute bring important scholars and national and world leaders to campus. Studying politics and international affairs at Furman is a complete, real-world experience.

Our Degree

How to Declare a Major in Politics & International Affairs

First, complete the field of study declaration form [PDF]. Once the form is complete, download the form and attach it to an email to the Department Chair, Dr. Liz Smith:  Students will be contacted by their POL major advisor within a week.  If the student does not hear from their advisor within a week, they should contact the chair.

On the field of study declaration form [PDF], students can indicate which professor they would like to serve as their advisor.  If possible, that request will be honored.  If they do not know who they would like to be their advisor, they can put the chair’s name, Dr. Liz Smith, and she will either serve as their advisor or assign them one in the department.

After declaring your major, visit Lori Schoen at the POL reception desk to pick up your major t-shirt and have your picture taken.  You will also be added to the department’s Weekly Announcements newsletter that is published each Monday.  The newsletter includes information about CLP events, internship opportunities, and other important department news.

Politics & International Affairs Major Map

Use the POL Major Map to find ways in which you can become involved with the Politics & International Affairs major.

Full Course Listing

Interested in our courses? View the full course listing.

Major Requirements

High-Impact Learning Programs

Mock Trial Bell tower award

Mock Trial Program

Aspiring attorneys can gain valuable experience as members of Furman's nationally ranked mock trial team.

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The Tocqueville Program

The Tocqueville Program sponsors a popular student seminar in political thought, and brings some of the nation's most prominent scholars and intellectuals to campus for public lectures.

Find out more about The Tocqueville Program
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scales of justice

The Justicia Project

The Justicia Project provides students with hands-on legal experience in the areas of criminal law, family law, and immigration law. Students are supervised by faculty members of the Department of Politics and International Affairs.

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Career Opportunities

A degree in political science with a liberal arts focus puts our graduates in high demand at top law schools, government agencies, non-profit organizations, and private companies.

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Meet a Paladin

Our Blog

Research Opportunities in Politics

A major in Politics & International Affairs grants the means to explore graduate-level research while studying as an undergraduate student. All of our students participate in at least one Engaged Learning experience, which includes research....

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Signature Programs

Have you ever been curious about exploring the proceedings of a trail? Has one of your classes sparked an interest in political philosophy? Our department has two signature programs that could prove to be of...

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Internships in Politics & International Affairs

Internships are an integral part of the Furman Advantage. For instance, 95% of our majors have participated in one or more internships during their time at Furman. Internships Abroad Our department is involved with both...

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