Getting a foot in the door of a future employer is a challenge most students face, be it for an internship or their first real job, but some of Troy University’s political science majors feel that the challenge is even bigger for them. “We’re not in Washington,” said James Todhunter, faculty adviser and assistant professor. “We’re not even in Montgomery.”
There is only a limited pool of potential employers for political science majors graduating from Troy. Troy’s Political Science Club held an informational meeting discussing successful strategies for starting careers to help give students an outlook on the professional life that awaits them after graduation.
While the main focus of the meeting was on the field of political science, most lessons are true for many other work fields as well. A number of students, almost all of them political science majors, met on Tuesday and shared their experiences regarding internship applications, potential employers and how to get started with their post-university career. Todhunter urged the students to go the extra mile. “Even if it sounds crazy, check out if there might be an opportunity,” he said.
According to Todhunter, establishing a network of contacts can be essential for finding interesting and rewarding jobs, but it certainly does not end there. Requisites such as the curriculum vitae should be something that each student ideally has on his or her hard drive to be ready at hand if needed. It is, therefore, worth spending some time creating a basic profile that can be tailored to the needs and special circumstance of each application process.
The Political Science Club does not just focus on career counseling. Its regular activities go beyond that. For next week, it is partnering with the political science department for a guest lecture by David Greenlee, former U.S. ambassador to Paraguay and Bolivia.
As Troy University’s ambassador-in-residence for this spring, Greenlee will give a lecture titled “The United States and Latin America — A Broad Look at the Neighborhood” at 4 p.m. on Feb. 5 in Room 114 of the Math and Science Building.
The event, which is free and open to the public, is just the beginning of the club’s schedule for the spring of 2015. Some of the upcoming events will be a fundraiser held at Zaxby’s, a field trip to the Southern Poverty Law Center, faculty panel discussions and a movie night.
Kyle Ganus, a senior political science major and president of the club from Leesburg, Florida, invites “any student who is interested in politics or political science to come out and get involved because a politically literate and active student body is one that will control its future.”
The Political Science Club is open not just for political science majors, but to all students interested in politics. Regular meetings are held every two weeks on Tuesdays at 4 p.m. in MSCX 114, with the next meeting taking place on Feb. 10.