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B.A. in Government and World Affairs

The Bachelor of Arts in Government and World Affairs gives students the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in today’s world. Offering a diversity of courses in American politics, international relations, comparative politics, law, local government, political philosophy and more, the program challenges students to understand local, national, and international problems, analyze cross-cultural issues and anticipate emerging trends in governance. The degree prepares students for rigorous graduate coursework, top-rated law schools and exciting careers in both public and private organizations. Particular attention is paid to developing students’ critical thinking and research skills, so they may develop political awareness and participate effectively in domestic and international affairs.

The government and world affairs major offers a choice of four concentrations: 
  • American Government - Prepares students to understand critical issues in local, state and national government, including the impact of political parties, the media and the courts.
  • Law and Government - Focuses on issues in both U.S. and global legal systems, including legal theory, the First Amendment and comparative legal analysis.
  • World Affairs - Leads students to an understanding of the global political landscape through study of international organizations, political economy, international security and selected regions, including Western Europe, Latin America and East Asia. 
  • General Government and World Affairs - Allows students to select coursework from across the sub-disciplines.

In addition, majors in the program may choose to complete a minor in Asian studies or  Latin American studies or a certificate in European studies. The certificate programs offer students the opportunity to strengthen and supplement their major with a multi-disciplinary focus on either Europe or Latin America.

Students can earn a minor in government and world affairs with 16 additional credit hours in government and world affairs courses.

Topics of Study

  • American government
  • political parties and interest groups
  • media and public opinion
  • urban politics
  • political thought
  • U.S. national security
  • international political economy
  • international organizations
  • regional studies, including Western Europe, Latin America, and East Asia
  • international law
  • comparative legal systems
  • constitutional law

Career and Graduate School Opportunities

Government and World Affairs majors have begun careers upon graduation in organizations ranging from the Florida Public Interest Research Group, the Democratic Leadership Council and the Heritage Foundation to the City of St. Petersburg and Hillsborough County government. Others have been accepted to excellent graduate programs such as those at the University of North Carolina, Colorado State University, Florida State University and Columbia University, as well as law schools including Northwestern, Georgetown, the University of Florida, Wake Forest, Harvard, Cornell, Ohio State University, University of Texas, Stanford and Notre Dame. 

Experiential Learning Opportunities

The Department of Government, History and Sociology provides numerous opportunities for students to get hands-on, real-world learning experiences. Internships in varied fields such as politics, law, city planning and marketing research are available. Using both direct placement and the Washington Center program, the department has had great success placing students into internships with local, state, and federal employers, including:

  • The White House
  • U.S. Senator Bill Nelson
  • Florida Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services
  • U.S. Department of State
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • The Florida Consumer Action Network
  • Hillsborough County City-Planning Commission
  • U.S. Small Business Administration
  • Trial Practices, Inc.

In addition to internships, students are encouraged to participate in numerous other opportunities such as:

  • study abroad trips – led by faculty members – to locations such as Europe, Asia and Latin America
  • presentations at local, state and national conferences on government and world affairs
  • independent studies
  • interaction with guest speakers, including ambassadors, high-level U.S. government officials, and global activists
  • field experiences
  • service learning

On-Campus Associations

  • Pi Sigma Alpha, national political science honor society
  • College Democrats
  • College Republicans