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International Relations

Department Chair

Duane Oldfield

Associate Professor of Political Science, Chair of International Relations

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401-4999



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Students display their countries flags at the annual International Fair in Ford Center for the Fine Arts.

Major, Minor

How We Work

  1. Our faculty have diverse backgrounds and an array of viewpoints. You might study revolutions with Karen Kampwirth, constitutional law with Lane Sunderland, or political psychology with Andrew Civettini. Our faculty present intelligent and diverse perspectives on international relations that encourage students to reach their own conclusions regarding questions of diplomacy, power politics, international law and ethics, transnational forces, military strategy, feminism, behavioralism, and ideal models of international political and economic development.
  2. We strive to understand our differences. In courses like Global Feminism and Antifeminism and Religion and World Politics, we explore clashing ideologies and possible solutions. Our students come from 48 states and 51 countries and we bring our unique experiences and perspectives into the classroom. We explore the hard questions and communicate openly and honestly with each other. We may not always agree, but we are respectful of our differences.
  3. We go abroad. We’ll teach you about the world outside the U.S., but there’s nothing quite like experiencing it yourself. Our students have participated in programs all over the world, including Knox in Buenos Aires, Knox in Barcelona, and Jordan: Area & Arabic Language Studies (Amideast). You can’t escape the globalization of our world, so we’ll do our best to send you into it well-rounded and thoroughly prepared.
  4. You’ll reach your own conclusions. We believe there’s no better place than a liberal arts college to explore political, economic, and ethical issues on an international scale. In Advanced International Relations, you’ll examine and analyze theories of international relations and participate in advanced seminar discussions. With an emphasis on writing and critical thinking, you’ll be prepared to form your own opinions and defend your positions. You might even choose to pursue your interests through an Honors project, like Katherine Miller ’13, who studied the role of NATO’s partner nations, or Anna Meier '13, who studied terrorist activity in France, Germany, and the U.S.
  5. We’re drawn to the idea of solving problems around the world. Maybe that’s why so many of our graduates end up in AmeriCorps and the Peace Corps. (Knox is the first college to have an official Peace Corps Preparatory Program.)

Where we go

National and international graduate fellowships are highly competitive. Our students don't just get the grades, but demonstrate intellectual and scholarly commitment, character, and leadership that lead to fellowships at prestigious institutions. Here's a short list of institutions where international relations grads have received fellowships:

  • Georgetown University
  • Columbia University
  • Johns Hopkins
  • Monterey Institute of International Studies
  • Patterson School of Diplomacy, University of Kentucky
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Illinois
  • University of London
  • University of California, San Diego
  • Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University
  • Yale University

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Printed on Sunday, January 19, 2020