I’m asked this question a lot. When I proudly tell people that I’m working towards my bachelor’s degree in political science, many people don’t seem to understand why.
“But politics is so depressing! How could you stand to study something so boring?”
Well, it’s certainly true that our current political climate is depressing. The Twitterer-in-Chief seems fully committed to make each of our mornings miserable as he posts gifs of himself beating up the CNN logo and attacking reputable media outlets on the daily.
But boring? Politics is anything but boring.
I was originally drawn politics by the Daily Show and Colbert Report. This may seem as a strange beginning for a very serious academic interest, but their styles of comedy made politics very accessible for me throughout high school. Of course, my background in government at that point in time consisted of the few courses required of me to graduate and head to college. But Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert initiated my interest in the vast world of politics. When they would poke fun at a topic, I became intrigued and wanted to learn more. To do so, I began reading about the news on the daily. I was slowly learning more about our political process and formed my own independent opinions on it. It may sound ridiculous given that shows like the Daily Show are meant to entertain, but by watching their shows I found my future. Without them, I don’t know that I’d be studying politics. My family is not interested in politics the way that I am, so I didn’t get information from them. I had to go out and seek it myself. I may have chosen my major without giving as much thought or having the experience as others, but I know now that it was the best decision I could have made for myself.
I’m not particularly smart, but I’ve always tried to work as hard as I can to do my work well. I won’t say my classes are easy for me, but my interest in the topic is what keeps me going. I may not be the most intelligent person around, but because I push myself hard I’ve learned a great deal and improved immensely.
Quite simply, political science is one of the most important fields of study. Now more than ever, the world needs those who understand the complexity of our government and the world as a whole. My courses teach me how to think critically about the problems facing the United States and how those situations could be remedied. I’ve learned more in these classes than I have in my entire life. To me, there is nothing boring about it. I am inspired to go out into the world of politics and bring my own unique perspective and experiences to it. By doing so, I can ideally seek to help people who need it. I may not end up making tons of money, but pursuing my passion makes up for the extra cash I could have made doing something else.
I don’t believe I’m superior to those in other fields by any means, but it’s simply what I love. My undergraduate education will give me what I need to pursue graduate school in the future if I choose to do so. Regardless of what I choose to do after undergrad, I know I’ve found my passion. I chose to study what I love instead of a field that could offer more job opportunities or money. While that does make my future a little less certain, it makes me happy to know I’ll be doing something that inspires me.