The Hamline University political science department aims to provide students with a comprehensive introduction to the subject matter, methods, and assumptions of political science. Our overriding goal is to help students understand the dynamic and changing political world in which they live and its ramifications for their lives. In the process, students also acquire improved analytic, speaking, and writing skills necessary for succeeding in a challenging sociopolitical and work environment.
Opportunities for Nonmajors
Nonmajors are welcome in all political science courses and are encouraged to use all of the department’s resources, including political internships, independent studies, survey research data bases, and the particular expertise of each faculty member. Nonmajors may also apply to the Model United Nations program.
Honors and Special Programs
The political science department participates in all of the honors and special programs available to Hamline students. Especially of interest are the honors thesis program, independent studies in political topics, collaborative research projects, teaching apprenticeships, internships in the public sector, senior seminars, and a wide variety of off campus programs including the Washington semester, J-term study abroad, Model UN, and semester programs offered through HECUA. Political science students may also choose to pursue a certificate in international journalism, and if they qualify, they can participate in Hamline’s 3-3 (early law school admission) program. Additionally, a small number of excellent students are selected each year to work as department assistants.
Political science graduates typically follow careers in public management, policy analysis, planning, international affairs, law, politics, or business. Hamline political science graduates include people who have become career diplomats, accomplished scholars, professors, high-ranking public employees, policy analysts, attorneys, elected officials, important political leaders, and professionals in a wide variety of other occupations. Similar opportunities are available today and in the future to able, well-trained political science graduates. The department periodically offers career panels, information sessions, and announcements about these possibilities.
The political science faculty have wide-ranging experiences, achievements, and recognition within the political science profession. The faculty have studied and traveled widely in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and Africa. Top professional recognition has come through books and articles published, teaching awards, and offices held in professional associations on a regional and national basis.
Alina Oxendine, associate professor, chair. BA, MA, Emory University; PhD, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Dr. Oxendine has published several scholarly articles on U.S. civic engagement, economic inequality and information technology. She is Chair of the Political Science Department and a College of Liberal Arts Administrative Head. Teaching Interests: American government and politics, political psychology, and research methods. Research interests: American public policy, community involvement, and economic inequality.
Binnur Ozkececi-Taner, associate professor. BA, Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey; MA, University of Notre Dame; PhD, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University. Professor Ozkececi-Taner is the author of a book on Turkish foreign policy and several academic articles on international politics. Teaching interests: theories of international relations, political conflict, politics and security in the Middle East, regional and international security. Research interests: foreign policy analysis, Turkish foreign policy, international security, and politics of the Middle East.
Joseph G. Peschek, professor. BA, University of Washington; PhD, University of Massachusetts. Dr. Peschek is the author of several scholarly books and articles on American politics. Teaching interests: contemporary political ideologies, western political thought, parties and elections and presidential politics. Research interests: contemporary American politics, political economy, and contemporary democratic theory.
David Schultz, professor. BA, MA, Suny Binghamton Center; MA, Rutgers University; PhD, University of Minnesota; JD, University of Minnesota; LLM, University of London. Professor Schultz has published numerous academic books and articles and is a nationally recognized expert in law and politics, government, nonprofit, and business ethics, campaign finance reform, and land use and eminent domain policy. Professor Schultz has received three Senior Specialist Fulbright Awards, one national teaching award, and has represented the United States for the State Department in several speaking assignments in Europe.
Zhenqing Zhang, assistant professor. BA, MA, Foreign Affairs College, Beijing, China; PhD, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Dr. Zhang also holds a graduate certificate from Johns Hopkins University – Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies. Teaching interests: politics in the Asia Pacific, international political economy, international development, and democratization. Research interests: U.S-China trade relationship, international intellectual property rights (IPR) regime, and East Asia democratization.