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International Political Economy

Special Programs

J-Term at Carthage

January Term, or J-Term, is a month-long period of study in January in which all academic departments offer innovative courses on campus, as well as study tours in other countries. IPE majors can gain valuable global experience by traveling abroad during J-Term. Carthage economics, finance, management, marketing, and modern languages professors regularly lead study tours to such destinations as China, Sweden, southern Africa, Hong Kong, Singapore, and England, where students meet executives and see firsthand how global businesses operate.

“My freshman year at Carthage, I went on the Guatemala J-Term study tour. I spent a month in the country studying sustainable economic development, and it changed my entire focus of what I wanted to do with my life.”
— Katherine Schlinder ’15, master’s degree candidate in development studies at the Graduate Institute of Geneva, Switzerland

The A. W. Clausen Center for World Business

The Clausen Center has brought in such prominent speakers as Bruce DuMont, Chicago radio/television host and founder of the Museum of Broadcast Communications; authors David and Julie Eisenhower; scientist Sergei Khrushchev; CNN senior political analyst Bill Schneider; and actor Daniel J. Travanti. Students have also had the opportunity to meet with retired executives from Mobil Oil and Snap-on Inc., and members of the Wisconsin legislature.

Many prominent speakers have also come to Carthage through the College’s Business and Professional Coalition, which comprises the leading business, civic, professional, and governmental leaders in southeastern Wisconsin. The coalition meets regularly for luncheons at Carthage that feature speakers and discussion. Carthage business, economics, and IPE students may be invited to these presentations. Guest speakers have also met with students in their classes.

Smeds Executive Internship Program

The Smeds Executive Internship Program allows Carthage students to apply their coursework in real-world settings and enables companies and organizations to employ students for real-work projects while evaluating them as potential employees. Participating companies/organizations have included FexEd, Snap-on Global, KPMG, Charles Schwab, Lavelle Industries Inc., the U.S. Department of State, Abbott Laboratories, Johnson Controls, Diversey, Deloitte, the Milwaukee Symphony, Jockey International, and more.

Student Organizations for Hands-on Learning

Carthage IPE students can get involved in a number of student organizations dedicated to putting what’s learned in the classroom into practice. Join Velocity Consulting, Enactus, Model United Nations, Mock Trial, and more.

Past Programs

ESPN’s Lester Munson Visits Carthage
During his three-day stay as a Johnson Distinguished Visitor in March 2014, Mr. Munson met with classes, talked with business leaders at Carthage’s Business and Professional Coalition, and gave a public presentation. The latter drew a large crowd at the Tarble Arena.

Christina (Wright) Bruff ’04 speaks about life at the U.S. Department of State
Christina Bruff currently serves as an economic development and multilateral affairs officer in the State Department’s Bureau of African Affairs’ Office of Economic and Regional Affairs.  She serves as the bureau lead on development issues in sub-Saharan Africa, to include advising on the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals; managing the Africa – Women, Peace, and Security small grants program; leading bureau policy on and response to gender-based violence issues; and coordinating the policy papers and logistics for multilateral events such as the UN General Assembly and African Union Summits.  She met with various classes on her visit.

James Bittman: “Finding Your Own Pot of Gold”
James Bittman, Chapman Executive in Residence at Carthage and faculty member at the Options Institute and the Illinois Institute of Technology, spoke at Carthage on Wednesday, March 17, 2010. He gave a presentation on options trading.

Brady Corporation Supports Enactus
In September 2009, the Brady Corporation Foundation awarded the Clausen Center a grant of $150,000 to support the Carthage chapter of Enactus. This global organization emphasizes community service along with business education. Faculty adviser David Schlichting of the Department of Business Administration has been highly effective in working with our students to develop a dynamic, growing chapter.

Lincoln Bicentennial Leader Visits Carthage
Eileen Mackevich, Executive Director of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission, was the Johnson Distinguished Visitor at Carthage at the end of April 2009. A wide range of community as well as College events took place, including coverage through Scripps Howard News Service and ‘The China Post’ as well as Milwaukee and local media. Ms. Mackevich is founder and long-term director of the Chicago Humanities Festival and was a public affairs commentator on WBEZ Public Radio in Chicago.

Governor Doyle and Cabinet Visit Carthage
In June 2008, Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle and his Cabinet visited Carthage. A breakfast meeting co-sponsored with the Kenosha Area Business Alliance (KABA) provided a superb opportunity for a comprehensive review of state policies and challenges regarding the economy, education, transportation, and other matters.

Great Lakes Forum — Professors Gartner, Hegrenes, Mast and Schlack
The Great Lakes face distinctive invasive species challenges. On Dec. 2, 2008, Prof. Robert Schlack of Economics analyzed the new Great Lakes Compact. Earlier, Prof. Jerry Mast of Political Science addressed policy aspects, while Profs. Tracy Gartner and Scott Hegrenes of Biology and Environmental Science focused on scientific dimensions. Research, as well as publication work, continue in the summer and fall of 2009. This major initiative is supported by Root-Pike WIN (Watershed Initiative Network) and the Wisconsin Sea Grant Program.

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2021), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • More than 90% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit The Aspire Center.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. More than 90% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage’s J-Term offers IPE students opportunities to study business culture in other countries. Recent J-Term study tours have been led by economics, finance, political science, and marketing faculty to such destinations as Sweden, Cuba, Argentina, southern Africa, and Hong Kong.

    • Carthage IPE graduates are working around the globe as computer analysts, financial advisors, investment brokers, international business analysts, mutual fund specialists, and for government and nonprofit organizations. 

    • Popular with IPE students, the student organization Enactus provides students with entrepreneurial experience through community projects. The group’s name borrows from three words: entrepreneurial, action, and us. Enactus has received regional and national recognition.

    • Carthage has ranked as a top Fulbright producer for four of the past five years. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors, and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from marketing to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from $25,000 up to full tuition. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about Intellectual Foundations.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 13:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked in the Top 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …