Kevin G. Lorentz, Daniel J. Mallinson, and Julia Marin Hellwege

Mar 14, 2023

Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond

American Political Science Association 2022

This new compendium, Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond, is a true asset to the discipline of Political Science (and other graduate programs as well) in the myriad ways that it provides guidance, advice, and thoughtful reflection for those considering graduate work, in graduate school, and beyond. This book should be referenced not only by those who are at the nascent stages of their political science career, but also by their mentors, teachers, advisors, and peers to help better propel forward the discipline and those in it.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Kevin Lorentz, Dan Mallinson, Julia Marin Hellwege, and Cherie Strachan about the book itself, which is available at no cost in electronic form from the American Political Science Association. (The book can be purchased in physical form from most booksellers.) The editors all noted that the project is important to the discipline, in opening up the mysteries of graduate school and beyond, to diminish inequities, and so that individual political scientists have a much better understanding of the workings of higher education, and how political science works at each entry point. The expectation is that this book will provide guidance along a path—it is not designed to be read cover to cover—but as a thoughtful exploration of particular points along a path of learning, developing a career, and engaging with political science as a discipline. After reading through Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond, I can certainly say that I wish I had access to these kinds of insight and guidance as I pursued my graduate work, moved into the job market, and as I started to work as a professional within this discipline.

There are quite a few topics covered in this book, with 69 chapters, and 150 unique contributors. Kevin, Dan, Julia, Davin, and Cherie worked hard to bring is as many useful and important perspectives as possible, so that the information in this compendium is not targeted just at individuals at a particular kind of institution, or even within the academe itself. And it is clear from the contributing authors and their chapters that they all have sound advice and thoughtful insights to give based on their experiences and reflections. The chapters engage topics that range from the basic advice about grad school applications and choosing a program or developing a research portfolio to “how to conference” or “To Twitter or Not to Twitter”; from how to think about research, teaching, and diversity statements when applying for jobs to imposter syndrome in political science to overcoming academic isolation while in graduate school. These chapters and approaches help to enlighten readers on the hidden curriculum of graduate school, as well as the resources that are available for students or faculty members.

The aim of this book is to help to move political science forward, to diversify the discipline, and to demystify the graduate experience. Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond has so many perspectives, intersectional identities, and experiences all contributing to the important advice and guidance for current and future political scientists. This book really is a benefit for Political Science as a discipline and for those who are engaged as political scientists.

This link will take you to the pdf of the book itself, which is available free of charge at the American Political Science Association website:

Lilly J. Goren is a professor of political science at Carroll University in Waukesha, WI. She is co-editor of The Politics of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (University Press of Kansas, 2022), as well as co-editor of the award winning book, Women and the White House: Gender, Popular Culture, and Presidential Politics (University Press of Kentucky, 2012), Email her comments at or tweet to @gorenlj.

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Lilly J. Goren is professor of political science at Carroll University in Waukesha, WI.

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