UVU Political Science Student Headed to Cambridge

UVU Political Science Student Headed to Cambridge

"The most important part of the [political science] major is that it teaches us how to engage in our communities and how to think critically about the way the world works."

Nate Roundy, a political science major with minors in humanities and philosophy, was accepted into the master’s program at the University of Cambridge in England. 

Nate’s love of politics and his unique views on the political landscape have driven him to new heights during his time at UVU. “I think there is a misconception that to study politics, you have to support a worldview, ideology, or political party,” he said. “While it is true that we all come to the table with different political sensibilities, political science is more about studying politics, its philosophy, its theory, and the people within it through an empirical lens rather than a normative one. You can set aside the political aspect and just look at how politics works. I think that is really interesting and changes the way we think and behave in our communities. That doesn't mean that there aren't controversial or intense debates within the courses. Rather, I think the most important part of the major is teaching us how to critically engage in our communities and how to think critically about the way the world works.”

Nate has been able to excel thanks to the focus both UVU as an institution, and individual faculty members have on student success. “Every time I interacted with a faculty member, I felt incredibly valuable and like my achievement was important to them,” said Nate. “The institution clearly is orientated toward the achievement of its students rather than elevating the notoriety of the university, which is quite unique.”

“Of course, there are so many faculty members, staff members, academic advisors, and community members who have helped me during my undergraduate career. Leslie Simon and Michael Shaw are among the most important faculty mentors I’ve had. They pushed me to be a better writer, thinker, and person. They also helped cultivate my desire to attend graduate school. Jay DeSart and Steven Sylvester are also very important faculty members who have helped me succeed at UVU. They have helped guide my research, given me helpful advice, and have been fantastic teachers! Most of my current capabilities within political science can be attributed to the teaching and mentorship they have provided me. John Goshert is also another faculty member I need to mention. He has helped expose me to theoretical debates that have influenced my research interest in ways that I'm very grateful for. A large reason why my applications to graduate school have been successful is due to these faculty members' investment in my potential and confidence that I could succeed.”

In addition to his coursework, Nate has been an extremely active member of the larger UVU community. In addition to working as an intern in the UVU Policy Office, he also works as a UVU presidential intern. He has also spent a great deal of time working on undergraduate research, securing over $15,000 in grant funds on his own. “The amount of funded research I have conducted while at UVU has been quite unique,” he said. “I'm really proud of the research I've been able to do with this funding, especially the work I am concluding this semester. I can see a huge amount of progress in my development as a researcher, and I am grateful for the belief that UVU has had in my potential.” 

While Nate is excited to be going to Cambridge, he has mixed feelings about leaving UVU behind. “I am going to miss being supported by a network of mentors,” he said. “I know I will find new mentors in graduate school, but it will still be hard to say goodbye to the people who have done so much for me. Having their constant support has meant a lot to me, and leaving that behind will definitely be bittersweet.” 

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