What Can I Do with a Poli Sci Degree? – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

What Can I Do with a Poli Sci Degree?

On Monday, March 29, the Department of Political Science will welcome HWS alums back to campus for a panel discussion titled “What Can I Do with a Degree in Political Science?”

Panelists will include Kristopher Grahame ’04, Nichole Malec ’05, Michael Mills ’96 and Neil Wakeman ’08, all of whom work for offices and organizations as varied the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the offices of  two New York State Congressmen, as well as one alum who is a communications entrepreneur who is running for Secretary of State in Georgia.

Students will have the opportunity to interact with alums and ask questions about graduate school, what a career in politics fresh out of an undergraduate institution is really like, and the variety of career options available to political science students. 

The panel will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Sanford Room; all are invited.

After working with the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office in Alexandria, Va., Kristopher Grahame ’04 began working for the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. and has since transferred to the Boston Division. At Hobart, he was a Russian Area Studies major and spent a semester abroad in Moscow. He received a Boren Scholarship from the National Security Education Program to study overseas in the Russian Federation during his senior year at Hobart. 

After graduating from William Smith, Nichole Malec ’05 worked for New York State Assemblywoman Susan V. John (D-NY), serving as legislative director until April 2009. Malec currently works as the regional director for Representative Daniel B. Maffei (D-NY) and oversees the Monroe, Wayne and Cayuga County portions of Maffei’s district, which also includes Onondaga County and the City of Syracuse.  Active in politics, she is a member of the Monroe County Democratic Committee and has managed campaigns for Monroe County Legislature and the New York State Assembly. At William Smith, she double majored in public policy and political science.

Currently running for Georgia Secretary of State, Michael Mills ’96 is owner and founder of PR1776, a communications company.  Prior to starting PR1776, Mills served as the southeast regional director of public affairs for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.  He was legislative aide to Georgia Secretary of State Lewis Massey and campaign press secretary for lieutenant governor candidate Mark Taylor.  Mills is also an avid volunteer, serving on the boards of YES!Atlanta, League of Women Voters of Georgia, Vote for America-Georgia, the American Cancer Society’s southeast Corporate Leadership Counsel, Communities in Schools of Georgia, and the Georgia Breast Cancer Coalition. He is the author of a book titled “Battling Democracy’s Decline.”  Mills was selected to the 2006 class of Outstanding Atlanta, Georgia Trend magazine’s 2001 list of “40 Under 40,” and was the 2002 Georgia State University Communications Department “alumni of the year.”  He is a 2001 graduate of Leadership Buckhead and a member of the Public Relations Society of America and the Corporate Volunteer Council of Atlanta.  Mills earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and holds a master’s in communication from Georgia State University.

After graduation, Neil Wakeman ’08 worked on Representative Dan Maffei’s 2008 congressional campaign as well as for the New York State Democratic Party.  Wakeman is currently a legislative aide for New York State Assemblyman Al Stirpe.  He is also the chair of the Town of Camillus Democratic Committee, and during the 2009 elections, helped facilitate, for the first time in more than 30 years, a Democratic majority of the Camillus Town Board.  Wakeman graduated from Hobart with a triple major in political science, international relations and Asian studies.  During his time at the Colleges, Wakeman traveled abroad to both China and Japan and spent a semester studying at the Danish Institute for Study Abroad (DIS) in Copenhagen, Denmark. He also worked as a communications intern at the German Marshall Fund of the United States in Washington, D.C., was a Student Trustee, and an active brother of the Chi Phi Fraternity.