Making The Right Decisons
The School's academic advisors, internship coordinator, faculty fellowship adviser and career services officer are available to assist students in the decision making process. The School offers individual mentoring, guest lectures, group workshops and roundtables on internships and job related topics. SIR also coordinates with peer-to-peer mentoring and career development projects initiated by the International Relations Undergraduate Student Association (IRUA), the Model UN group, and external USC and community support services.
Beginning with Freshman Orientation in the summer, students meet each semester with an academic adviser and devise a plan of study for the next one to four years. Naturally, these plans may undergo revisions as interests develop and change.
Our faculty members take a strong interest in following students' progress and are available during office hours for questions relating directly to course work or for informal conversation and mentoring. Additional support and mentoring is available from the SIR faculty fellowship adviser.
The School of International Relations and the University Career Services Office present many events from career fairs to career workshops (topics include resume writing, job search strategies, and interview preparation) to alumni panels where students interact with recent graduates and learn about the many sectors where alumni have found challenging employment relating to their academic studies.
Professor Robert English, SIR Director, has established the SIR Director's Speaker Series on Theory and Practice. With a focus on people whose careers have successfully applied IR theory to contemporary global problems, this series exposes students to a variety of contemporary global issues and career paths. The School also hosts a Career Roundtable Series featuring important visitors to the USC campus. In the roundtables, students hear career advice from these senior mentors and have the opportunity to ask questions in a relaxed, informal environment. Students can suggest topics for career activities to Christina Gray (email@example.com). The School of International Relations also maintains a listserve for broadcasting internship and job notices of particular interest to International Relations majors.
In these ways we ensure that our students hear about meetings and conferences, competitive scholarships, travel abroad, fellowship opportunities, and other activities that balance the academic rigor and provide practical applications relevant to their goals.
SIR has identified the following learning objectives as specific criteria:
Development of critical thinking through study of the basic workings of the international system—how power is organized, who the key players are and what role they play—while specializing in one of the following sub-fields of IR: security studies; international political economy; foreign policy analysis; and culture, gender and global society;
Understanding the development of the interdisciplinary field of international relations including the major theoretical approaches;
Ability to apply theories of international relations to current events and policy concerns in the context of an appreciation of the diversity of worldviews held by various stakeholders;
Appreciation of politics and society outside the U.S. through concentration in a major world region and/or a study or internship experience abroad;
Ability to identify opportunities for civic engagement and participation in the policy processes at local and global levels;
Four-semester competence in a foreign language;
Basic competence in qualitative and quantitative research methods, including an understanding of issues of ethics, objectivity, and contending research perspectives;
Ability to conceive, research and write a major research paper (or policy task force memo) through a 400-level course.
Contact an undergraduate advisor in VKC 301: (213) 740-6278