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American Political Science

1. Policy Analyst

Since political science majors study the process for generating public policy, the role of policy analyst is a natural application of their work as a student. Policy analysts rely on strong critical thinking, writing, and research skills as they formulate statements about the nature and impact of proposals for public policy.

Like political science majors, policy analysts must devise a sound thesis and build a persuasive argument for or against the adoption of a particular policy initiative. In addition, analysts use their understanding of the political and legislative process to enlist the support of individuals who can help advance initiatives.

2. Legislative Assistant

Senators, assembly members, representatives, and other elected officials at all levels of government hire assistants to help them to carry out their duties. Legislative assistants tap the writing and verbal skills developed by the political science major to coordinate communication with constituents and inform them about developments within their district.

They assess the interest of constituents about current political issues and present the views of their elected officials within a positive framework. Legislative assistants respond to constituent inquiries and help to resolve problems of citizens within their jurisdiction.

Legislative assistants research policy issues, track legislation, and survey the positions of other legislators on pending legislation. They prepare briefings for their legislator and other office staff.

3. Public Relations Specialist

Public relations representatives influence public opinion about their clients based largely on placing stories with the media. Political science majors develop the writing skills needed to draft compelling press releases and the persuasive skills to assert the benefits of covering a particular story. They also learn how opinions are formed, and the role of the media, as they research current events during their studies.

Public relations specialists often organize and publicize press conferences and other events in order to attract media attention and get the word out about their client. Political science majors gain some insight into this process as they study the mechanics of organizing campaign events and public appearances by government representatives.

4. Social Media Manager

Public opinion is increasingly shaped by social media. Political candidates, officials, parties, and interest groups need social media managers to monitor the views of constituents about their administration and current issues.

Social media managers must understand various social media platforms and orchestrate campaigns to shape perceptions of their users. Political science majors know how opinions are formed and influenced by various media and can be instrumental in formulating and implementing these plans.