International Relations Program Courses and Requirements

Statement of Purpose

This multidisciplinary major is one of the strongest international relations programs in any American liberal arts institution. It requires students to integrate the study of politics, economics, history, and foreign languages, and it also sends students for at least a semester of study abroad for first-hand exposure to a foreign society. The program increasingly builds on the expertise of its faculty in African, East Asian, European, Latin American and Middle Eastern Studies, as well as in the areas of international organization, international justice, and diplomacy.  Students avail themselves of this expertise for their two-semester long senior thesis. 

In addition to fulfilling rigorous academic requirements, students are encouraged to develop initiative and leadership skills. Majors are called upon to arrange conferences, receptions, dinners, and student-faculty retreats, and they present speakers in the International Relations Colloquium, an active program that brings experts from government, the private sector, the media, and academia to campus. Students also participate in issues of program governance, including curricular issues. The major offers multiple opportunities for student research with faculty and participation in academic conferences.

The program is designed to give motivated students the core analytical skills, the ability to synthesize different disciplinary approaches, the clarity of expression, and the leadership skills needed to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world. Graduates of the program are attractive to a wide range of employers and graduate schools. Common career paths include public service, non-governmental organizations, international organizations, business, journalism, law, and academia. Pomona is one of the top 50 colleges and universities in the country in the production of career diplomats.