Rebecca Rankins

Class Year



Winnebago, Illinois


Political Science


Criminal Justice

Growing up in a small Illinois town, political science major Rebecca Rankins came to Carthage hoping it would feel like home. After settling into her major and life on campus, Rebecca couldn’t be happier with her decision to attend Carthage, and has even helped recruit incoming students.

Throughout her time at Carthage, Rebecca has made lasting connections with professors, staff members, and fellow students which have lead to great opportunities for her. After thought-provoking classes and even a J-Term study tour to France with the other students in her major, Rebecca explained that her field “is filled with people who want to help you and want to help the world through politics.”

After graduation, Rebecca looks to make an impact on the current political climate through graduate school and research opportunities.

“If you are considering political science, I urge you to jump right in. PolySci is filled with people who want to help you and want to help the world through politics.”

Rebecca Rankins, ’19

Career goal

“After Carthage, I plan on attending graduate school and pursuing different research opportunities in political science.”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

Professor Phineas Marr of the Religion Department really had an impact on my life at Carthage. The approach he had on teaching History of Christian Thought was really unique and engaging. His teaching style really helped me discover parallels between events in history to the present day.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class at Carthage so far has been Constitutional Law II: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties. I really enjoyed learning the actual literature of civil rights and discovering how, through law, we’ve gotten to the point we are today in America with rights and liberties.”

Toughest class

“My toughest class so far at Carthage was Introduction to Political Thought because I have never been interested in theory or philosophy. However, I ended up really liking the course because it gave me room to develop my own theory on politics.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“I went on a J-Term study tour to Guadeloupe, France in 2017 as part of a Franco-Caribbean culture course. It was incredible to witness both French and Caribbean culture on such a beautiful island.”


“I received a merit scholarship as well as a Faculty Honors Scholarship. The Faculty Honors Scholarship is the scholarship I’m most proud of because I was nominated by faculty to receive this scholarship. It really made me proud to think that I am making a good impression in my department.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“My favorite moment at Carthage was during my experience as an Orientation Crew member. I also give tours on campus and an incoming freshman’s mother actually recognized me and thanked me for helping her daughter choose Carthage.”

Favorite spot on campus

“One of my favorite spots on campus is the tutoring lounge in the David A. Straz, Jr. Center because it’s a comfortable place to have tutoring sessions or review for tests.”

Biggest surprise so far

“The biggest surprise so far was how willing professors are to help students find their niche in their studies.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“If my 8-year-old self saw me now, she would probably be slightly confused on what politics was, but she would also be happy that I was happy and passionate in my studies.”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“Political science is especially interesting given the current political climate in the United States and throughout the world. If you are considering political science, I urge you to jump right in. PolySci is filled with people who want to help you and want to help the world through politics.”

Why Carthage?

“I chose Carthage because I come from a small town and the campus reminded me of the small town atmosphere. At the same time, I liked how close the campus was to different opportunities in Kenosha, Chicago, and Milwaukee.”