Our undergraduate program is designed to equip students with the interdisciplinary approach, critical thinking skills and international perspectives necessary to address real world challenges. Students can expect to be challenged by a rigorous interdisciplinary curriculum founded in critical social theory and international political economy. Undergraduate students are required to take seven core classes that, taken together, explore and problematize notions of culture, migration, conflict, governance, popular movements, and identities and boundaries. In the process, students acquire critical reading, writing, research, and problem-solving skills tailored to contemporary local, regional, and international challenges.
The BA program is unique for its interdisciplinary approach to international studies and commitment to placing the themes of power and inequality at the heart of academic inquiry. Unlike conventional programs that focus on international security and economy, our program addresses the economic in conjunction with the political and social. Moreover, undergraduates are encouraged to develop second-language proficiency through two years of intensive language study, and we encourage study abroad in a country where the second language is spoken. Students learn to think in more international and interdisciplinary contexts, to value social and cultural complexity, and to question conventional wisdom. As a result, our students often engage in activism and social justice work in Chicago, nationally, and internationally.
Students in the INT Department pursue internship opportunities to gain job experience, investigate career possibilities, earn academic credit, and round out their concentrations. We work with the University Internship Program to help students find or create an internship that suits their particular interests. Our students have worked at local and international non-profit organizations, consulates, government offices, international businesses, and cultural institutions, including RefugeeOne, the Council for American-Islamic Relations, the Puerto Rican Cultural Institute, and the European Community Commission’s Office in Brussels, which offers a unique research internship.
Study Abroad Programs
All International Studies majors are encouraged, but not required, to participate in study abroad programs. Study abroad challenges students to develop cultural competency, expand their education through diverse intellectual perspectives, and engage with local and global challenges. DePaul University sponsors study abroad opportunities with a range of course offerings, including intensive language-learning classes, cultural and historical studies, public service, and business. Some INT students pursue study abroad programs outside of DePaul that match their particular interests.
Employers of Graduates
The combination of language training with rigorous preparation in interdisciplinary social sciences and political economy opens doors to careers in nonprofits and community organizations, international non-governmental organizations, international diplomatic entities, international law, international commerce and cross cultural communications.
Students who complete the major in International Studies are prepared with the writing and critical thinking skills necessary to go on to graduate school and many choose to pursue advanced degrees in the political, economic, anthropological, sociological, geographical, historical, linguistic, or literary fields. We have placed students in prestigious graduate programs with membership in the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs, including those at Johns Hopkins University, Tufts University, University of Maryland, Georgetown University, University of California at San Diego, and University of Colorado at Boulder. Additionally, our students have entered University of California at Berkeley, University of Chicago, Emery University, University of Illinois, Indiana University, University of Michigan, Northwestern University, University of Wisconsin at Madison, and Yale University in languages or the social sciences.