10 things no one tell you about being an International Studies/ Relations

I’m a nerd. It’s fine.


Hi gals,

So after scrambling for the best suited major possible, I settled for International Studies. Some argue that it is just Political Science with more global emphasis, well, those people also argue that Women’s Studies is an Mrs. major.

But seriously nothing about reading Foucault says “I’m spending thousands of dollars so I can get married before 24.” First of all that would be a very expensive significant other, just saying.

Anywho, I started off as a pre-med, like the other half of my class. After unfortunate circumstances, I decided to drop my well- designed bio major and become a Political Science major instead which did not go very well. It was just a lot of bureaucracy with a heavy emphasis on American politics. As much as I love raging about the gridlocks in class, I still thought I needed a platform where I would be encouraged to talk about conflict between Djibouti- Eritrea and how France interfered without participating in the combat. I want to be able to talk about how Putin compares to Saddam Hussein. I want to talk about the differences between IMF and World Bank and see how they effect the global economy.

So I re-did my 4 year plan and filled it with classes that focus on the global issues; the next thing I know, I am far from being a Political Science major but much closer to International Studies.

However, no one told me about the things I would experience as a International Studies major. For the future reference, here are 10 things you will experience as a International Studies major:

1- Your daily routine will include reading the news, around 4 times a day

Our TV in the apartment only gets turned on for New Girl and Mindy Project. However that, of course, does not stop me. I check BBC once in the morning, once during the chapel break, once at the end of the day and another time before I go to sleep.

2- It will literally make your day when you hear something good that is happening on the other side of the world

I was at school when I read about Cuba, opening it’s borders (October 2012). Some of my friends were sad because they thought Cubans caved in, but that did not stop me from getting super excited.

3- You will get asked questions like “So what is going to happen with Israeli problem?”

Erm, the problem is I’m no expert, so I really don’t know. You can’t possibly expect me to solve this problem and analyze it within 5 minutes, as we are standing in a line. Just saying, this problem has been going on since 1945.

4- You will avoid discussion politics with your extended family, your friends’ families and even your significant other’s family

You are my friends’ or SO’s family; hence I really want you to like me but asking about Islamic State and why Turkey is not helping the US more to defeat ISIS’s means opening Pandora’s Box. So God help me if you bring up how all Middle Eastern countries can’t be democratic because they are Islamic.

5- You will get excited when you find a non- intl relations major sophistically talking about a potentially global problem

“Wait, you’re an environmental engineer? DO YOU WANT TO WANT TO CHAT ABOUT FRACKING WITH ME?” I feel like that’d be better than asking someone on a date.

6- You will realize that there are certain places you can live

It’s not a shocker that most of the jobs pile in big cities like LA, NY, Boston, DC or Philly, which might mean that you might have to kiss goodbye your dreams of living in Portland Oregon.

7- Job- search engines think that you have to work with the government

Not true; many GONGOs, NGOs or even multinational companies look for International Studies/ Relations/ Business majors nowadays.

8- You will be made fun of for confusing Yemen for Oman on the map

I, once, got judged hard core for confusing those two. In all honestly, I would probably judge too. Because it’s Oman, you know, it’s so obvious.

9- When people ask what your ideal job would be, you will mention UN

Intl relations major student- “My dream job? Uhm I guess for this month delegate of Australia for United Nations Security Council… Or just be a delegate of France in General Assembly. You know, vetoing (not a word I know) the Russia all day everyday would be nice.”

Non- intil major student- “Oh… Cool.” *Idon’tcareeyeroll”

10- You will be incredibly excited to graduate because you will want to travel the world, volunteer and finally make a difference

No one can solve all problems in the world, unless we are talking about the person who has the power to imprison all dictators for life. But trying will not hurt, and even if it hurts you at one point you will keep going because of the sweet contentment of doing good.

Stay cool, study global politics



Published by Idil Ozer

Senior at Hope. International Studies major, Political Science minor. The Anchor, World News Co-editor. Blogger for the Odyssey and Thought Catalog. Feeds on news, politics and donuts.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.