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Politics, Policy & Administration

Politics, Policy and Administration


While not required, we strongly encourage students to incorporate internships into their academic program. Internships are highly personalized and should be chosen to fit each students specific needs. Western students have interned in over two hundred workplaces and groups in the past fifteen years.

Intern placements in 2013-2014 include the Oregon state legislature, Representative Peter DeFazio’s office in Washington, D.C., the Bureau of Land Management, the Polk County District Attorney’s Office, the Marion County District Attorney’s Office, the Oregon Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance program (SHIBA), various private law firms, Oregon Department of Natural Resources, and the Thuriah Medical Center of Saudi Arabia.

For more information, contact Dr. Mark Henkels at henkelm@wou.edu.


Students graduating in Political Science and Public Policy and Administration from Western Oregon University work in a wide range of fields for many different organizations. Many work in federal, state and local government, including areas such as the Social Security Administration, Oregon State Legislature, Oregon Department of Social Services, and many local governments.

Our graduates also work in various non-profits such as the Salem 55+ Senior Center. You can also find our graduates in the private sector, working in the health insurance industry. Many go into politics, including campaign work and lobbying. Some graduates work in international affairs, such as for Peace Corps, US AID, NATO, and national security.

Graduates in political science often continue, or enlist, in the U.S. military. They can be found in every branch of service.

Graduate schools

Our undergraduate alumni also pursued graduate degrees at many universities. Recent graduates have gone to American University, Oregon State University, Portland State University, University of Oregon, University of Washington, Washington State University, and Willamette University, and other schools. While they often enroll in Masters in Public Administration (MPA) programs, they also pursue graduate degrees in political science, public policy, international relations, and business administration (MBA).

Many students from the legal studies program and our majors have gone to law school. The greatest number go to Willamette University School of Law, but in recent years our graduates have also studies law at the University of Oregon, Gonzaga University, Seattle University, Western State University, and Whittier Law School. In addition, students in other majors and minors attending Western Oregon University have gone to these schools and many others as well.


Division of Social Sciences 503-838-8288 | or e-mail: ryalss@wou.edu
Location: HSS 231

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