Undergraduate Major

Political Science Major (BA)

Be where the action is as you explore and debate real-world politics. You'll gain the leadership skills to succeed in an array of occupations related to law, government and advocacy.

Political science student at Common Ground NCC

Program Overview

At Widener, understanding how government affects our daily lives is at the core of our curriculum. We combine innovative experiential learning opportunities and traditional classroom work to help you create the change you want.  You'll learn to apply knowledge of political systems to issues that most interest you, like: 

  • Climate change
  • Globalism
  • Healthcare
  • Law and society
  • Political activism

There are so many opportunities to study what you're passionate about. We offer a flexible curriculum that allows a variety of minors or double majors. When you graduate, you won't just start your career. You'll continue the work you've been doing all along.

Program Options

Your journey to a powerful future starts at Widener. With our flexible curriculum and variety of options you are sure to find the path that's right for you.  

View the Loading... for curriculum and coursework requirements.

Political science is one of the majors traditionally chosen by students interested in going to law school. Our students have the opportunity to participate in a pathway for pre-law.

The accelerated BA/MPA program enables high achieving undergraduate political science majors to begin fulfilling requirements for a master's degree in public administration while completing the bachelor's degree. You can get both degrees in just five years.

You can get a law degree in 6 years at either of the Widener Law Schools if you qualify for the 3+3 Program. 

If you meet certain requirements, you are also guaranteed admission to Commonwealth Law or Delaware School of Law.

To view requirements and more information, see the Loading....

The double major criminal justice and political science is designed for students interested in law school or careers in court- or government-related professions.

View the Loading... for more information.

Admissions Information

Applying to Widener is easy—and free! Simply complete our Widener Application or the Common Application. You'll also need your official high school transcript and either an admissions essay or your SAT/ACT scores. We're a test-optional school, so there's no need to submit both.

Know you're interested in applying to Widener but unsure if you're ready to zero-in on a major? You can apply as an Exploratory Studies student with an undecided major. This program will help you start your college journey on the right foot while you explore which undergraduate program is the right fit for you.

When to Apply​

We accept applications on a rolling basis—there are no hard deadlines. Apply when you're ready and we'll take a look as soon as we receive your app. 

Key dates to keep in mind:​

  • October 1: FAFSA opens for the next academic year (Widener's school code is 003313)​
  • November 1: Early Action deadline and decision notifications begin​

What to Expect After Applying​

Once we receive your application and all materials, you can expect to hear back from us quickly. Along with your application decision, you'll also find out about any merit-based scholarship awards. You're automatically considered for merit scholarships as soon as you apply—you don't need to apply separately.

Learn more about the application process

If you apply before November 1, you are considered an Early Action applicant which comes with benefits like:

  • Receiving your admissions decision by Thanksgiving
  • Early consideration for merit-based scholarships
  • Early notification of financial aid offers, including need-based awards
  • Priority enrollment for summer registration—where you sign up for classes!

All applications are non-binding, so why wait? Apply today!

Our admissions team will help you make the most of college-level credits earned after high school. We maintain strong partnerships and articulation agreements with numerous local community colleges and also accept a wide range of course credits earned at accredited colleges and universities.

Curious about how many credits may transfer? Email your transcripts to transfer@widener.edu and our transfer coordinator will personally review your coursework as an unofficial credit evaluation. Applicants are given priority during busy seasons, but you don't have to apply to work with our transfer coordinator. 

Transferring doesn't have to be a guessing game—share your stats and we'll take it from there! 

Learn more about applying as a transfer student

Widener University serves as a "second home" for students from around the world. We are located just outside of Philadelphia and close to New York City and Washington, D.C.—offering many unique professional and personal opportunities to explore.

Want to know what it's like to be an international student on campus or need assistance navigating English proficiency requirements? We're here to help, and our international admissions director will support you through the application process. 

This support doesn't end with admissions—our International Student Support team will serve as a valuable resource throughout your Widener journey—meeting Visa/immigration requirements, getting acclimated to campus, and much more.

Learn more about applying as an international student

Program Highlights

You'll have the opportunity to travel with faculty to gain hands-on political experience in Europe, Washington D.C., Harrisburg, Philadelphia and more. Our flexible curriculum and professors' personal mentoring help you out along the way, and prepare you for the future.

Students and faculty at High Impact Practices Fair

High Impact Practices and Research

Before you graduate, you'll participate in high impact practices that help you learn the research and communications skills to prepare for the job market. An individualized senior research poster presentation, internship, semester abroad, or community political engagement project are all experiences that put political science majors on the inside track.

Students in Harrisburg

Real-World Experience

Different clubs and organizations around campus offer the opportunities to lead and engage in political and community activities.

Take your civic and political engagement knowledge and apply it at Student Advocacy Day in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where you'll get to discuss topics of concern with elected officials.

Students and faculty political science

Faculty Mentorship

Our faculty drive every student they teach toward personal and professional success. The small class sizes mean personal attention for you. Here, you'll find your second family in professors and classmates. 

Nonprofit Certificate Faculty Teaching

A Unique Political Engagement Model

You'll find an innovative two-phase model of political engagement activities at Widener:

•Phase one emphasizes being an informed citizen, but also pushes for greater appreciation of multiple perspectives on controversial public policy topics.

•Phase two emphasizes an experiential learning approach to advocacy through a persuasive, yet civil framework.

Clubs & Organizations

Political Science majors have the opportunity to join various clubs and organizations across and outside of campus to expand their network, inlcuding the Amnesty International Club, the Pi Sigma Alpha - National Political Science Honor Society, and many more.

Faculty

Our professors invest in your success through close mentoring and continual feedback.

Your Inside Track to Success

Your Inside Track to Success

With a strong network of alumni and industry professionals, you're sure to find career success.

Outlook & Outcomes

Potential Careers

  • Attorney/Paralegal
  • Lobbyist/ Policy Advocacy
  • Nonprofit/Campaign Management
  • Legislative Assistant
  • Campaign Management
  • Policy/Intelligence Analyst

Industry Growth

Job outlook for political scientists is projected to increase 9% by 2030, as fast as the average for all occupations.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Recent Employers

  • Retail Industry Leaders Association
  • Lancaster Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  • J. P. Morgan Chase
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Hallowell & Branstetter, Political Consultants

Political Scientists Research

  • Who has power and how government is used to exercise it
  • How elections have an impact
  • Who influences public officials
  • The effectiveness of public policies

Fields & Industries

  • Public Service
  • Business
  • Government
  • Healthcare 
  • Non-profit 

Student Stories

Cloe DiFlumeri poses alongside two individuals during an internship at Museum of Arts and Sciences.

"There’s so much overlap with my majors. They’re interdisciplinary so they allow me to explore my passions, but I love the different perspectives they all bring."

Cloë Di Flumeri

Class of 2023
Taylor pictured with the Pride lions statue on campus

"“Political science and sociology connect in a lot of different ways. Seeing those connections and then also connecting that to my daily life has been super important.”"

Taylor Easter

Class of 2025
Brandon Matambo stands in the lobby of Quick Center; behind him is a stock ticker and students walking down steps

"Widener is a really welcoming community, and the professors have been by my side the past couple of years, always able to help me with open arms."

Brandon Matambo

Class of 2023

Take the Next Steps

Apply

Applying online has never been easier—and it’s free! We also accept the Common Application. Take the next step toward joining the Widener Pride.

Get in Touch

When you graduate, you won't just start your career. You'll continue the work you've been doing all along with a resume distinguished by career-specific learning experiences.