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Makenna Fitzgerald

2021 Graduate

Majors: Political Science, Public Relations, Strategic Communication

Hello everyone!, My name is Makenna Fitzgerald. I am majoring in Political Science and Personal Relations and Strategic Communication.

Every time I speak to an aspiring Political Science student, I always highly recommend double majoring in Communication. One of the reasons is Brian Lamb's involvement with the College of Liberal Arts. Brian Lamb is a Purdue graduate who started C-SPAN, a news network based out of Washington, D.C. that is an incredible source for unfiltered news. Purdue is home to the Center for C-SPAN Scholarship & Engagement (CCSE) and the C-SPAN Archives, which include more than 250,000 hours of footage covering all major political events.

Last May, I went on a two-week study abroad program (a "Maymester") in Washington, D.C. in collaboration with the Political Science department and CCSE. During this Maymester, I was able to meet Vice President Mike Pence, both Indiana senators, the House representative for Purdue's district, and so many others! This semester, I am taking a 20-person class taught by Brian Lamb where we discuss political events and presidential communication for three hours every Monday. The combined work the CCSE and Political Science department do together is the number one reason why I choose Purdue.

Purdue is also the only campus in the country to offer a local membership for Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society. Notable alumni include Bill Clinton, Sharon Pratt Kelly, and so many more. Pi Sigma Alpha traditionally only offers national memberships, meaning that you must have completed a certain number of credit hours to join. The credit-hour limit means that only juniors and seniors can be national members. However, at Purdue, the local membership allows freshmen and sophomores to participate. In February, I was allowed to attend the Pi Sigma Alpha 2020 National Student Research Conference in Washington, D.C. as a local member. Purdue’s Political Science department paid for the entire trip. Since Purdue is the only campus that offers this local membership, this is the only campus where I would be able to have this experience.

I chose Purdue because I wanted the Big Ten college experience full of exciting football and basketball games, while also having the small liberal arts class sizes. So far, I have adored all of my professors and felt truly challenged by Purdue’s curriculum. I really admire how Purdue's Political Science department works with the Communications department. I have been able to take a lot of classes that overlap, helping me build my overall knowledge of political communication.

As a Communications student, I was also able to get a job relevant to my future career path. I am a communications assistant for the communications director of the School of Chemical Engineering. In this position, I am able to use what I've learned in the classroom in a real-world work setting. I am very grateful for all of the opportunities that Purdue has given me, and I am so eager to get back on campus! Boiler Up!