Politics & International Affairs

Bachelor of Arts


Political science is the study of government, public policies and political behavior. It uses both humanistic perspectives and scientific skills to examine the United States and all countries and regions of the world.

Did You Know?

  • Politics & International Affairs has been the second most popular major in recent years (2019-23) for reasons unrelated to ideology. Consistent with the University’s commitment to update curriculum and prepare students for a changing world, the major requires graduates to take a class in statistics. In the Fall of 2021, students in a data-driven politics classes produced papers studying homeownership during COVID and the societal impact of incarceration, among other topics. 
  • Six of the 18 Rhodes Scholars in Wake Forest history have majored in Politics.
  • Over the past five years, one of every 10 graduates has declared a major (whether primary or secondary) in the discipline.


Sample courses for students studying Politics & International Affairs include:

  • Congress and Policymaking
  • State, Economy and International Competitiveness
  • Political Theory
  • Politics of International Development
  • American Constitutional Law

View official major requirements »

Practical Experience & Skills

As a Politics & International Affairs major, you will hone the writing, communications, analytical and computer skills that are critical to a liberal arts education. The courses offered in the politics & international affairs department will prepare you to think critically and independently, with tolerance for others and concern for current affairs.

Majoring in politics & international affairs can qualify you for many different careers in private for-profit and nonprofit organizations, as well as public sector organizations. Students often pursue careers in business; law; consulting; state, local, and federal government; journalism and communications; international organization; finance; polling and campaign management; community service and non-governmental organizations (NGOs); and pre-college and college teaching.

Political science training also provides valuable preparation for participating in community organizations, electoral politics, movements on behalf of specific policies, and for seeking elective or administrative positions in government. While many of these are voluntary activities, participation in them develops skills and creates opportunities for career success.

Students in this program will develop the following skills:

  • Skillful at speaking, reading, and writing
  • Ability to effectively communicate ideas
  • Able to associate with people with differing beliefs
  • Skilled at developing personal thoughts/theories
  • Ability to assess crises and problem solve
  • Awareness of community needs
  • Quantitative literacy (ability to calculate, interpret and present statistical data using statistical software programs)
  • Propensity to be a leader

Get to know our Personal & Career Development Center

Clubs & Organizations

Politics & International Affairs students participate in the following clubs and organizations:

  • American Constitution Society
  • College Democrats
  • College Republicans
  • Deacs Decide
  • Federalist Society
  • Girl Up United Nations Foundation
  • Global Food Committee
  • Hydrating Humanitate
  • International Affairs and Model United Nations Club
  • International Justice Mission
  • LGBTQ Center
  • Pre-Law Council
  • Social Justice Incubator
  • Social Justice Theme House
  • Student Association for the Advancement of Refugees
  • Student Government
  • Students Helping Honduras
  • The Alexander Hamilton Society

Career Outcomes

Careers that often interest Politics & International Affairs majors include:

  • Account Executive
  • Attorney
  • Campaign Coordinator
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • CIA /FBI Agent
  • City/Urban Planner
  • Commercial Real Estate Agent
  • Congressional Aide
  • Conservationist
  • Consultant
  • Credit Manager
  • Debate Coach
  • Detention Officer
  • Diplomat
  • Educator
  • Financial Advisor
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • Human Resources Specialist
  • Insurance Agent
  • Judicial Clerk
  • Labor Relations Specialist
  • Legal Assistant
  • Legislative Assistant
  • Legislative Correspondent
  • Lobbyist
  • Marketing Coordinator
  • Litigation Clerk
  • Paralegal Investigator
  • Peace Corp Volunteer
  • Policy Analyst
  • Political Analyst
  • Probation/Parole Officer
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Public Service Worker
  • Senator
  • Technical Analyst

Politics majors have become leaders in government, business and philanthropy in a wide variety of sectors. They include a deputy attorney general of California; a deputy director of UNICEF; executives for Delta Airlines; an official at The World Bank; and many others.

Related Programs

Those who are interested in Politics & International Affairs also consider the following programs:


At Wake Forest, we have lots of good stories to share, so we hope you’ll get to know us. Browse our Viewbook to learn more.

2023-24 Undergraduate Viewbook