Frequently Asked Questions

Our students with President Obama. 

Pictured above: Our students with President Obama (left) and Speaker of the House Boehner (right).

What can students do with a major in the Philosophy, Politics & the Public Honors Program?

After graduation, PPP students have gone on to many varied activities. Some have gone on for more education, whether it be law school, a graduate program in public policy, or even study towards an advanced degree in a traditional discipline (such as philosophy or mathematics). Others choose to become involved in the active world of the public sphere both locally and nationally. We have had graduates go on to work in Congressional Offices and in Departments of the United States Federal Government, some have chosen to enter Teach For America or the Peace Corps, and still others have gone on to careers in journalism or to work at the grassroots level on behalf of marginalized communities. The program is an excellent preparation for careers in these areas or in related fields such as diplomacy, foreign service, or electoral politics.

Is the program liberal or conservative by nature?

The Philosophy, Politics & the Public Honors Program is neither liberal or conservative by nature. Past and current students greatly differ in their political ideologies, and professors in the program respect and value students ideologies. While supportive to liberals and conservatives alike, however, the program consistently challenges its students to analyze, critique, and defend their views.

Is the program more focused on philosophy or politics?

The program does not favor philosophy or politics. The flexible nature of the program allows students to dive deeper into whichever field(s) they choose. More importantly, the program highlights the ways in which philosophy and politics interact.

I did not learn about PPP until my first year at Xavier University. Can I transfer into the program?

While the program is competitive and deliberately kept to a small number of students, first-years and sophomores interested in the program are encouraged to apply. Such students should contact Professor Colella.

How do I explain the program to others?

The nature of Philosophy, Politics & the Public Honors Program is not easy to define in its entirety. Yet, whether it be for the sake of family or an interview, explaining the program concisely and accurately is extremely important. Below are definitions one could use. (Remember that the definition you give will often (maybe even always) depend on to whom you are giving it.)

  • an interdisciplinary investigation into the past, present, and future of democratic institutions in theory and in practice.
  • an honors program which teaches students to see the world in a connected way, through the intersection between history, politics, philosophy, and language.
  • an interdisciplinary honors program that gives us conscience (philosophy), tools (politics), and the setting in which we can use what we have learned (the public).

FAQs about Internships

Do internships pay?

Most internships are unpaid. However, financial assistance may be available. Please contact Gene Beaupre to inquire about stipend opportunities.

Can I earn college credit?

You may earn three hours of academic credit upon the successful completion of a summer internship. To do so, you must register for POLI 398 Internships in City Government. In addition to maintaining regular weekly working hours, interns are required to submit a mid-term report detailing duties, as well as a final paper about the experience, job likes, dislikes, etc. Papers are due no later than two weeks after completing the internship.

How do I find an internship?

You should start by meeting with Gene Beaupre to outline what you expect to accomplish with an internship. Next, get input from your academic advisor and professors. To find additional opportunities, stop by the Career Services Center, network with students who have completed internships and search online.

When should I apply?

Some internships, especially at the federal level, require applications before January while others have deadlines closer to March or April. Start at the beginning of the spring semester by putting together a resume. Stop by the Career Services Center for tips on resume writing and see Gene Beaupre to get a list of past interns.

Does Xavier help with housing?

Xavier does not provide or assist with housing. Students are encouraged to discuss possible living accommodations with past interns.

"PPP majors learn how to work in different teams for a common interest, even if we disagree on different things. We are able to find what brings us together."
- Lizzie Glaser, '12