Hometown: Prairie Du Sac, WI
Majors: Political science and economics
Senior Paul Beach was undecided on his major for the first year and a half of college, and he took exploratory classes in political science and liked them. “Honestly, it just kind of fell into place and they both [political science and economics] kind of relate to each other in certain ways and it just fit,” Beach said. “Both deal with human behavior on some level and that is what I liked about it.”
During one of his semesters at UW Oshkosh, Beach had the opportunity to work with a political science professor doing research. "We subsequently wrote a paper about what I found and we are going to a national conference to present the results," Beach said. "That experience opened my eyes to what real academic writing is all about and helped give me an advantage over other graduate school applicants."
Beach said his political science courses prepared him for graduate school by improving his reading and writing skills. “I’m a lot better at writing and reading than I was. I learned to read documents to be able to see in-between the lines and be able to draw conclusions from that,” Beach said. “In graduate school there is a lot of reading, a lot of problem solving and all of our classes are discussion based, so it helps a lot to be comfortable talking in front of people and expressing your opinions.”
My political science classes were mind-opening, and I have an overall different view of how the world works, Beach explained. “I was a little naïve when I first came to school and this helps me to take a look at the big picture,” Beach said. “You think you know a lot more than you do until you take a lot of courses in American politics.”