What You Will Learn as a Public Policy & Political Economy Major

The major in public policy and political economy at Rollins College is rooted in the tradition of liberal arts and sciences. As a major, you will become familiar with the theoretical approaches and context that political science and economics use to study and solve public problems. In its essence, you will be asked to understand and grapple with society's most pressing civic problems: Who shall have health care? Who will be poor? Who will exercise power? And who will enjoy social mobility?

Rollins professor and student partner on academic research.

Responsible Leadership

The Public Policy major will develop your understanding of the applied and normative contexts of pressing social problems. The major develops your ability to recognize that public problems and their solutions involve tradeoffs between competing values. The program locates public policy questions within an ethical context by considering questions such as: What is of value to society and its citizens? How best can those values be achieved? And what tradeoffs are required when pursuing different allocations of societal values? Responsible leaders understand the implications of the policy choices they have before them and recognize that decision-makers have moral obligations to the community.

Rollins students hold the American flag at an event.

Global Citizenship

The public policy major will expose you to the domestic and global nature of public policy. For example, some courses investigate how different countries respond to similar public policy problems. You can study healthcare policy in the United States, Britain, Germany, and Sweden, thereby uncovering the globalized nature of many public problems and the vast range of policy solutions, given particular combinations of political and economic values within each society. You will also gain an understanding of how different types of political party systems, legislatures, and electoral arrangements influence policy outcomes.

Rollins alumni and student having a conversation in a hallway.

Productive Careers

Students learn quantitative and communication skills that permit them to analyze public policy problems and communicate effective solutions. Hence, majors are capable and prepared to assume responsible leadership positions in both the private and public sectors. Importantly, students are prepared to offer potential solutions for those dilemmas while understanding the tradeoffs that each option requires.

Rollins student attends the Harvard Public Policy Leadership Conference.

Meaningful Lives

A liberally educated person is a citizen prepared for democracy by being thoughtful, able to communicate their needs and aspirations to political leaders, and civically engaged. The public policy major will equip you with the skills and knowledge to think critically about what comprises a meaningful life for yourself and others.

Interested in Studying Public Policy & Political Economy at Rollins?

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