Political Science and Liberal Arts Education in Kentucky

Political science is more than just the study of governmental systems. Students of political science study the systems that help to manage society. Closely tied in with political science are the disciplines of criminal justice, law enforcement public administration, international studies and organizational leadership. A Kentucky degree in political science or a combination of these disciplines can prepare you well for a multitude of careers.

Most Kentucky university and college political science departments require a minimum number of basic, fundamental courses in American politics, comparative politics, international politics, political theory and history, and methodology. Apart from that, students usually may choose courses from other areas to satisfy requirements of the major. These courses may include public policy and analysis, law, United States foreign policy, diplomacy, internships, negotiation, the American presidency, Asian politics, laws of mass communication, the American legislature, and the judicial process. Graduates with an undergraduate political science degree will find many opportunities available to them in Kentucky in the fields of law, communications, government, public administration, education and business.

Kentucky Political Science

Political Science Careers in Kentucky

According to Workforce Kentucky, the government and public education industry accounts for 16 percent of Kentucky's employment (2009 data). From 2000 to 2009, employment in this industry increased by 6.2 percent. The state and local government sector employs more Kentuckians than any other industry sector, at 284,300 in 2009. Government entities from the City of Louisville to the Kentucky State Department for Local Government in Frankfurt employ political science graduates at a multitude of levels and within many different occupations.

What types of careers, other than governmental, are available for political science degree holders in Kentucky? Many private industries, corporations and businesses hire political science graduates in a variety of positions. These positions may include project management, analysts, planners, marketing, communications, researchers, investigators, strategic consultants, quality assurance managers, regulatory affairs coordinators, principal specialists, and regional managers. Some companies hire political science graduates to help them comply with government regulations in information technology, health care, finances, tax law, agriculture, education, nonprofit legislation and more.

How to Become a Politician in Kentucky

The Kentucky Secretary of State's office publishes qualifications for all elected offices at the local, state and national government levels on its website. In Kentucky, it is important to note that write-in candidates are only allowed in General Elections, not in Primary Elections.

A good way to become involved in Kentucky politics is to start making a difference within your local area. Running for School Board is the first step many politicians have taken on the road to higher elected offices. School board members in Kentucky have staggered four-year terms, and you must be at least age 24 in order to run for school board. You must also have been a Kentucky resident for three years before the election, registered to vote in your district, and have completed high school and hold a GED or diploma. You may not hold a state office that requires taking a constitutional oath, be a member of the General Assembly of Kentucky, or hold any other political office at the time of election. You also may not be involved in selling to the school system any equipment, services or supplies, or have a relative employed by the district of which you seek a school board seat. If you are interested in running for your local school board, file papers with your County Clerk and include a filing fee of $20. More information is available from your local Board of Elections or County Clerk.

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