Kate Haapala has always enjoyed watching people interact with one another. This, combined with an interest in political systems, led her to study political science. She wants to make a difference in the world, and plans to pursue graduate studies that focus on not-for-profit organizations, such as global peace-keeping studies.
Her courses at Carthage have given her the opportunity to explore all areas of political science.
“I have been able to take a lot of very challenging courses such as Nuclear Proliferation and International Relations. Next semester I will be taking International Security,” Kate said. “The courses and the work are difficult; however, the professors have always been extremely helpful.”
Kate’s professors encourage her to engage in the department through hands-on learning, she said. Professors are always available for extra help, whether it be to discuss a paper, talk about an exam or answer questions about homework, she added. They also have helped Kate find internships and graduate school programs that fit her personality and her future goals.
“Carthage’s focus is continually on the students,” she said. “The professors are very willing to work one-on-one with students and help them grow as individuals, as well as academically.”
“Carthage’s focus is continually on the students. The professors are very willing to work one-on-one with students and help them grow as individuals as well as academically.”
“I would like to pursue working for a non-governmental organization in the future. There are a lot of different organizations, some of which focus on humanitarian efforts and other organizations focus on international politics or nuclear weapons proliferation prevention. I have not yet established where I would like to be working specifically; however, with so many options, I am confident that I will always be interested and challenged.”
How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?
“Dr. Jeffery Roberg is my favorite professor. He is an incredibly kind man who has a great background with political science, enabling him to teach students in depth in a variety of different courses. More importantly, Dr. Roberg cares deeply about the students he both mentors and teaches.”
“I enjoyed studying Nuclear Weapons Proliferation last spring. It was a challenging course, but it was awesome to learn about the different weapons’ capabilities and what their role in current international politics is.”
Kate is a swimmer for the Carthage Women’s Swim Team.
“My most difficult course has been Intermediate Macroeconomics. It was a struggle for me to grasp all of the material we were covering in class during lecture and match it to the readings assigned from our textbook.”
Favorite moments and memories at Carthage
“I have really enjoyed being a part of a sports team, especially a team made up of so many great women — not to mention that Carthage Men’s Swimming is made up of some pretty outstanding individuals as well. The relationships established both with professors and peers have been greatly influential.”
Favorite spot on campus
“The library is home to some very large, comfortable chairs that are great for reading and doing homework while looking out at the lake.”
Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?
“Find a track in the political science major that you truly enjoy studying. There are a wide variety of courses offered to help find a niche. Don’t be shy about asking for help from professors. In fact, seek out help even if you’re only slightly unsure. The professors are always willing to help and converse about your goals, passions, questions and future.”