Due to the growing interdependence of all nations, the United States has seen an expansion of employment opportunities in international organizations, agencies and businesses. Today there is a need for college graduates with a strong background in international affairs. International affairs prepares students for careers in the federal government, international organizations and agencies, international nonprofit organizations, international businesses and the Peace Corps.
The program also provides graduates with an excellent background that allows them to pursue postgraduate study in international relations, political science, economics, history, area studies, law, international management and journalism.
CU Boulder offers a comprehensive and flexible interdisciplinary program in international affairs leading to the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree. Majors take courses in political science, economics, history, anthropology, geography and business. In addition, students become well acquainted with at least one selected region of the world outside of the United States and attain proficiency in one of the languages of that region, as well as familiarity with its cultural and political activities. Regions of concentration include Africa/Middle East, Asia, Europe/Eurasia and Latin America.
International affairs majors begin their studies with a survey of the most compelling global issues of the day and then go on to detailed analyses of international relations and economics. Courses also focus on problems of international development, the environment, international economic relations and United States foreign policy.
As the curriculum progresses, students learn to analyze the effects of international trade, investment, world population and the use of resources. Graduates may choose elective courses that apply the theories of conflict behavior and social organization to the problems of war and peace. Because geographic boundaries have an important influence on the political activities of a country, the program includes a systematic study of power and strategic concepts.
CU Boulder’s Alpha Eta chapter of Sigma Iota Rho (SIR), the national honor society for international affairs majors, encourages the discussion and awareness of international issues through intellectual and social discourse. Participation in SIR provides an opportunity to meet other students, faculty and community members interested in world politics through its close relationships with other internationally oriented organizations.
In addition, majors may participate in the Model United Nations—a program hosted by Harvard University. There is also an International Affairs Club that puts on programs of interest to students in the major.