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State Government

Like the federal government, all state governments have three branches (legislative, executive and judicial), all of which have numerous agencies that fall under the branch’s umbrella. 

A sampling of courses for students interested in a career in state government:

  • POLS 100: Introduction to American Government
  • POLS 303: State and Local Government
  • POLS 305: Parties and Elections
  • POLS 307: The U.S. Congress

Notable Alumni


Adam Brown

Adam M. Brown
B.A., 2012
Executive Administrative Assistant at Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts

My political science degree provided me with the critical-thinking skills, communication skills, and in-depth understanding of governance necessary for a career in state government [or with the judicial branch]. The courses I took in American government, public administration and political philosophy proved to be an invaluable foundation in starting my career in public service


Scott Reimers

Scott Reimers
B.A., 1993
AVP, State Legislative Affairs at Illinois State Medical Society

A degree in political science from NIU was the foundation on which I was able to build a career at the forefront of creating public policy in the State of Illinois. NIU’s exceptional faculty, student services, and challenging courses pushed me to extend the limits of my knowledge, embrace intellectual and cultural diversity, and pursue a fulfilling career that applies my degree to a leadership role in state government. NIU’s political science department provides a first-class education for the best and brightest students from all walks of life, shaping and inspiring your journey toward personal growth and future success.


Adam Schuster

Adam Schuster
B.A., 2012
Campaign Manager for Mike Amrozowicz, 31st District (Lake County)

My political science education at NIU, both for my bachelor's and master's degrees, provided me with the necessary substantive knowledge to succeed in my career in state government. More importantly, my professors trained me to think critically and analytically about problems using the scientific method. This training in 'how to think' equipped me with a framework to quickly learn new information and use reason to find solutions. An aphorism commonly attributed to Albert Einstein says that 'education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school'; to the extent that learning how to think has been more valuable in my day-to-day work in government than any particular fact or subject, this has held true for me.

Contact Us

Department of Political Science
Zulauf Hall 415
Phone: 815-753-1011
Fax: 815-753-6302

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