• What is the Distinction Program?

    The Political Science Distinction Program is aimed at students who are excelling in Political Science classes and who want more political science in their lives. In the program, students and faculty have weekly meetings during which professors or students lead discussions about issues in political science, share research, or engage in debates over current events. The program also hosts social events, and when the Department hosts prestigious speakers on campus, Distinction students have the top priority in meeting these scholars outside of the speaking events hosted.


    The TCU Political Science Distinction Program exists to provide a co-curricular outlet for students to engage with faculty and each other in small group settings to discuss and debate pressing issues in contemporary politics and political research.


    An engaged group of TCU Political Science majors who will go forth to impact local and global communities.

  • Program details

    We seek to accomplish our mission through providing individualized instruction in three areas:

    Weekly Meetings

    Programming for these meetings varies, but includes roundtable discussions, faculty research presentations, professional development, networking and student senior thesis presentations. The meetings provide a small-group setting in which students engage with each other and faculty members to discuss and debate intellectually challenging questions of political import.

    Capstone in Political Science

    Capstone is Socratically-based class comprised only of Distinction students in which “big questions” in political science are pondered. The theme of the class is “Dilemmas of Democracy” and different faculty rotate teaching this course every spring semester.

    Senior Thesis

    The senior thesis is NOT a requirement for Distinction students; however, those that decide to write a senior thesis work directly with a faculty mentor on this project. It is an outlet for students to conduct original research on a political question of personal interest, explore the answer empirically, and produce a work of scholarship that embodies the analytical, research, and writing skills that students have developed over the course of four years.

  • Join

    NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS! To apply, you must fill out the online application and upload an unofficial transcript.

    We look forward to your application!

    Eligibility Requirements:

    In order to be accepted to the program, applicants must:

    1. Exhibit a willingness and ability to take on extra intellectual challenges;
    2. Have a minimum overall GPA of 3.25;
    3. Have a minimum POSC GPA of 3.5;
    4. Completed at least 30 total credit hours, with six hours in political science at TCU;
    5. Receive no grades below B in any political science course.

    Member Obligations:

    In order to remain in the program and graduate with Distinction in Political Science, members must:

    1. Attend weekly meetings. These meetings take place at 12pm every Wednesday of the semester. If you cannot attend any meetings one semester (e.g., study abroad, Washington Internship, or other obligations), you must tell the faculty co-chairs in advance. Otherwise, you must attend a minimum of seven meetings over the course of the semester.


    2. Take POSC 20203 (Intro to Political Theory) and POSC 20093 (Scope and Methods). Please note that POSC 20093 requires prior completion of or concurrent enrollment in MATH 10043, MATH 10283 or MATH 10524.


    3. Take Capstone. Capstone--a small, discussion-based upper level seminar open only to Distinction members--will be offered once each semester. Distinction members typically take Capstone their senior year. If you do not take Capstone, you cannot graduate with Distinction in Political Science.


    4. Attend POSC Department Speaker Events. Occasionally, the POSC department brings in scholars and speakers from other universities. These include the Brown and Green Chair speakers, among others. Distinction students are expected to attend these speaker events.

  • Application

    Click below to apply! Deadline for Fall 2019: Friday, December 6

  • Class of 2020

    Meet the Students

    Caroline Anton

    Phoenix, Arizona

    Caroline is a Political Science and History double major originally from Arizona. She serves on the Executive Board of Student Foundation as the Director of Membership and works as a swim instructor for The Fort Worth Swim School. Caroline plans on attending law school after graduation.


    Campus Leadership : Student Foundation Director of Membership, Alpha Chi Omega

    James Bolton

    Vernon, Texas

    James is a senior from Vernon, Texas. He is studying Political Science and this is his first year in the Distinction Program.


    Campus Leadership : Frog Camp Director Board, President of TCU Talking Frogs


    Notable Awards: Eagle Scout, Paderewski Gold Medal

    Paige Buell

    McAllen, Texas

    Paige is a senior Political Science and Anthropology major with a Spanish minor. She has a passion for non-profit and NGO work. She hopes one day to work on issues she cares deeply about with the end goal of one day working for the UNHCR.


    Campus Leadership : Founder of ONE at TCU, Distinction Program, Anthropology Honors Society, TCU Model UN team


    Notable Awards: Deans Honors List

    Mackenzie Cerwick

    Dallas, Texas

    Mackenzie is a double major in Political Science and Criminal Justice with a minor in History and plans to graduate in the Spring of 2020 with a double degree. She is originally from Chicago, IL but moved to Dallas for high school. She hopes to go to law school and eventually become a criminal judge to combine my passions for both Political Science and Criminal Justice. I also hope to move back North someday as I miss the cold and the winters (I'm crazy, I know)!


    Campus Leadership : Rho Gamma, Frogs for Autism


    Notable Awards: Dean's List, Dean's Scholar

    Christian Chen

    Dallas, Texas

    In the pursuit of a career blending politics and medicine (MD & MPH), Christian Chen has worked first-hand as a Congressional Intern for Rep. Kay Granger (TX-12) & as a Public Policy & Advocacy Intern for the Alzheimer’s Association—the latter of which focused on propelling Alzheimer’s as a Public Health issue in U.S. Healthcare Policy. Currently a 4th Year at Texas Christian University, Christian will hold degrees in both Biochemistry & Political Science by May 2020. On campus, he has served as the President of multiple service organizations, including the TCU GO Center & TCU Chords4Kids, while currently serving as the President of the TCU Chapter of Habitat for Humanity.


    Campus Leadership : President-TCU Habitat for Humanity


    Notable Awards: Class of 2020: Pillar of University Leadership 2018

    Nick Christopherson

    Sioux Falls, South Dakota

    Nick Christopherson is a senior political science and history double major from the cold northern city of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Upon graduating high school, Nick was eager to migrate south to better temperatures and new opportunities. TCU has provided Nick with great friends, challenging academics, and helpful guidance as Nick has pursued his double-degree. After graduation, Nick hopes to attend law school to further develop his love of writing and public speaking.


    Campus Leadership : Frog Corps, Jazz Band, Moot Court, Writing Center Employee


    Notable Awards: Man of God Scholarship, Dean's Scholarship, Dean's List, Faculty Choice Award for Excellence in Spanish

    Clayton Dana-Bashian

    Dallas, Texas

    Clayton was born March 23rd, 1998 in Dallas, Texas. He has resided in Rowlett, Texas for most of his life, where he is engaged in local politics. He is a senior at Texas Christian University, pursuing a B.A. in Political Science with an English minor and a B.A. Philosophy with an Economics minor. Clayton also holds leadership positions in the Student Government Association, First Year Experience program, Chancellor's Leadership Program, and others.


    Campus Leadership: Student Government Committee Chair, Student Government Representative, Frogs First Director, Connections Mentor, Model UN Delegate


    Notable Awards: Chancellor's Scholar, House Member of the Year 2017/18, Eagle Scout

    Marilyn Downing

    Venus, Texas

    Marilyn is from Venus, Tx and is currently studying Political Science, Women and Gender Studies, and Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies at TCU. Her hobbies include watching thank, u next at least once a day, watching Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's instagram lives, and sleeping.


    Campus Leadership : TCU NAACP, L4L, SAGE



    Sarah Goldberg

    Milwaukee, Wisconsin

    Sarah is a senior Finance and Political Science double major from Milwaukee, WI. She recently returned from a semester in Madrid and is excited to finish her last year at TCU in the Distinction Program surrounded by other like-minded individuals. After graduation, Sarah will enter the Banking Industry as an Equity Research Analyst.


    Campus Leadership : Student Government Association, Neeley Fellows, Student Foundation, Chi Omega, TCU Madrid Study Abroad


    Notable Awards: Chancellor's Scholar, TCU Scholar, Dean's Honor List, Delta Gamma Sigma, Pi Sigma Alpha

    Azhan Hasan

    Tyler, Texas

    Azhan is a senior Political Science student at TCU from Tyler, Texas. This is his first year in the Distinction program.


    Campus Leadership : Orientation Leader, Connections Mentor, Frogs First, Frog Camp, TCU Speech and Debate VP


    Jordan Hittesdorf

    Anaheim Hills, California

    Jordan is a senior at TCU and is double majoring in Philosophy and Political Science. She was recently a part of the Political Science Internship Program in Washington, D.C., where she interned in the House of Representatives for a Texas congressman. On campus, Jordan is a Philosophy Department Teacher’s Assistant, a part of the Political Science Distinction Program, a member of the TCU Elite Dance Team and Alpha Chi Omega Sorority, and a member of the John V. Roach Honors College. Jordan has plans to attend law school following graduation from TCU.


    Campus Leadership : Philosophy Department Teacher’s Assistant


    Notable Awards: Dean’s List, TCU Scholar

    Alexandra Hulme

    Nashville, Tennessee

    Alexandra is a senior double major in Criminal Justice and Political Science. She took the LSAT this summer and is currently applying to law school for the fall of 2020! Her dream job is to be a criminal defense attorney. She has worked for Congresswoman Kay Granger as well as the Tennessee Post-Conviction Defender. She currently interns for the Republican Party of Texas and will be interning at Varghese-Summersett law firm in the spring. A fun fact about me is that I have been to 20 countries and will be visiting my 6th continent in December!

    Campus Leadership : Alpha Delta Pi, Alpha Phi Sigma Criminal Justice Honors Society, International Justice Mission, TCU College Republicans, Pre-Law Club, Semester at Sea study abroad program


    Notable Awards: Faculty Scholar, TCU Scholar, Dean's List, John V. Roach Honors College

    Nina Mansala

    Sacramento, California

    Nina is a senior Political Science and Spanish double major from Sacramento, California. She is thankful for TCU and the opportunities it has given her such as Model UN, IJM, and being a part of the TCU cheerleading team. Her interests include social justice, nutrition, immigration and the refugee crisis. After graduation, she plans to attend law school and become an immigration attorney.


    Campus Leadership : TCU Cheerleading team, Model United Nations, International Justice Mission, John V Roach Honors College


    Notable Awards: Chancellor's Scholar, TCU Scholar, Dean's Honors List, Spanish & Hispanic Studies Faculty Choice Award 2018, Chi Omega New Member Scholarship Award 2017

    Bailey Mooney

    Atlanta, Georgia

    Bailey is from Atlanta, Georgia and is a Political Science major and Women and Gender Studies minor.


    Campus Leadership: Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Secretary

    Katie Nissen

    Magnolia, Texas

    Katie is currently pursuing majors in Political Science and Economics with minors in Geography and Biology. She plans to pursue a graduate program in the field of Public Health, Political Science, Geographic Information Systems, or some other related field.


    Campus Leadership: Women in Politics, College Progressives


    Notable Awards: Dean's List, TCU Scholar, Chancellor's Scholar

    Madison Reed

    Decatur, Texas

    Madison Reed is from Decatur, Texas. She is a political science major with double minors in Business and Criminal Justice. She plans to go to law school and open her own firm one day.


    Campus Leadership: RA in Clark Hall, Vice President of Golden Key Honor Society, Leaders for Life Mentor Director, Sophomore Getaway Director


    Emma Riley

    Fulton, Missouri

    Emma is a senior studying Political Science and Sociology. This is her second year in the Political Science Distinction Program.


    Campus Leadership: John V. Roach Honors College, Sociology Society, and Veteran International Student Ambassador


    Notable Awards: Deans List (3 semesters) and TCU Scholarship

    Preslie Sandidge

    Fort Worth, Texas

    Preslie is a senior Political Science major and Business and Spanish minor from Fort Worth, Texas. She recently returned from a semester in Spain where she spent four months practicing Spanish and integrating with a different culture. Preslie wants to pursue a career in academia and plans to apply for a masters program to continue her studies after TCU.


    Campus Leadership : Phi Mu Day Chairman of Preference Round and Philanthropy Round


    Corinne Schillizzi

    St. Louis, Missouri

    Corinne is currently a senior at TCU. She was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. She is a Political Science major and Middle East Studies and Art History double minor. Corinne is excited to further her involvement in political science through the distinction program. Corinne is currently interning for Senator Ted Cruz in Washington, D.C. for the fall semester. Following graduation, she plans to pursue a career in politics and eventually attend Law School.


    Notable Awards: TCU Dean's List and Dean's Scholar

    Patrick Spencer

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Patrick is a Political Science Major with a Business Minor. His main interest in the world of political science is foreign policy. As part of the Army ROTC program here at TCU, he plans to commission as a lieutenant in the United States Army. After his first 4 years, he will either go to graduate school to get a Masters in Public Policy and Administration or will stay in the Army and try to become and Army Chaplain.


    Campus Leadership : Model UN, Army ROTC, Beta Upsilon Chi Fraternity, TCU Dance Marathon


    Notable Awards: Dean's List

  • Class of 2021

    Meet the Students

    Eliza Batty

    Scituate, Massachusetts

    Eliza is a junior political science major with minors in history and criminal justice. She is from Scituate, Massachusetts and plans on attending law school after graduation. Eliza spent her summer interning with the Republican Party of Texas. She also loves to travel and spent a semester abroad in London.


    Campus Leadership: Director of Fundraising for College Republicans, Turning Point USA secretary, TCU writing center tutor, Alpha Delta Pi member


    Notable Awards: TCU Provost Scholar, JVR Honors College student, Kathryne McDorman Honors Scholar, Political Science Research Grant Recipient, International Study Award Recipient, Dean’s List

    Rosemary Boutwell

    Baton Rouge, Louisiana

    Rosemary Boutwell is a junior Political Science and Strategic Communication double major and Spanish minor from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Aside from the distinction program, she is a member of Alpha Chi Omega and loves to give back to the TCU community through leadership positions such as Frog Camp and SGA. Rosemary is passionate about social justice and environmental sustainability and she is thankful for the continued encouragement from TCU’s political science department.


    Campus Leadership: Frog Camp, Honors Ambassadors, Model United Nations, Student Government Association


    Notable Awards: Dean’s Scholarship, Dean’s List

    Fatima Burney

    Fort Worth, Texas

    Fatima is a Political Science International Relations major from Fort Worth, Texas. She is a first-generation student and is passionate about uplifting underserved communities through education and advocacy. Outside of the distinction program, she is a John Butler Interfaith fellow, and a McNair Scholar. After graduation, she hopes to attend graduate school to help her move forward in her professional career.


    Campus Leadership: MSA President, Leaders for Life, Student Support Services, McNair Scholar, RSL John Butler Interfaith Fellow


    Joaquim Carvalho

    Fort Worth, Texas

    Joaquim is a third-year International Relations and History Major from Fort Worth, TX. His professional passion is to work in local government in Fort Worth to assist the wonderful community. He would like to supplement this with his interests and hobbies in working out, tabletop games, and dancing. Joaquim's goal would be to earn an executive position in local government to positively impact the Fort Worth community.


    Campus Leadership: Frog Camp Director Board, Chancellor's Leadership Program, Recreation Center


    Notable Awards: Membership to Phi Alpha Theta


    Annie Gipson

    Springfield, Missouri

    Annie is a junior from Springfield, Missouri and is majoring in Political Science with a minor in English. She is a member of Phi Mu, previously serving as their Continuous Open Bidding Chairman. After graduating, she plans on attending law school.


    Campus Leadership: Phi Mu Continuous Open Bidding Chairman, JVR Honors College


    Notable Awards: Dean's Scholar, Dean's List

    Emily Gustafson

    Kansas City, Missouri

    Emily is a junior majoring in Political Science and minoring in French and Journalism. She plans to attend law school upon graduating in May 2021. She has previously interned at a personal injury law firm and also interned in D.C. for the U.S. House of Representatives. On campus, Emily is involved in IJM, John V. Roach Honors College, and Kappa Alpha Theta, where she helps organize philanthropy events. In her free time, she enjoys running half-marathons, yoga, and cooking.


    Campus Leadership: IJM, Kappa Alpha Theta (CASA Committee Sponsor Director), Pre- Law Club, John V. Roach Honors College


    Notable Awards: Congressional Gold Award, Selected to present research at NCUR 2020, Dean's Scholarship


    Nicole Hawkins

    Tuscon, Arizona

    Nicole is a journalism and political science double major from Tucson, Arizona. She has a passion for government, politics and all things news-related and plans to attend graduate school for communication or journalism once she graduates from TCU. Ultimately, Nicole hopes to pursue a career in political communication.


    Campus Leadership: Model United Nations, Phi Mu Fraternity, Vice President of ONE, Volunteer at the Texas Center for Community Journalism


    Notable Awards: TCU Scholar, Dean's Honor List, North and East Texas Press Association Scholarship Awardee, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society

    Maddy Hoff

    Edina, Minnesota

    Maddy is a political science major and a journalism minor from Edina, Minnesota. Outside of the classroom, she is a Fort Worth Young Life leader and a college ministry leader for her church. She is also a part of the TCU Honors College and a member of Kappa Alpha Theta.


    Campus Leadership: YoungLife leader, Christ Chapel college leader, Kappa Alpha Theta sorority


    Notable Awards: Honors College , Deans List


    Kataryna Lewyckyj

    McHenry, Illinois

    Kataryna is a Political Science major from McHenry, Illinois and is a huge Chicago sports fan! In addition to Political Science, she is currently exploring classes in the Bob Schieffer College of Communication as she develops her interests/skill sets and prepare for a career post graduation although she is unsure of exactly what that will be right now. When she is not in class or studying, she enjoys being heavily involved on campus to make the student experience as enjoyable and inclusive as possible for every student.


    Campus Leadership: Student Government Association, Student Foundation, Director of Sexual Assault Prevention (It's On Us campaign), Chancellor's Leadership Program, Resident Assistant, Frog Camp Facilitator, Leaders for Life, John V. Roach Honors College


    Notable Awards: Dean's Scholarship recipient, Dean's Honor List (Freshmen Year), Pillar of University Leadership award Class of 2021, Student Development Services Cultural Here (September 2017)

    Emma Marek

    Lake Oswego, Oregon

    Emma is a junior pursuing a B.S. in Political Science with minors in Economics and Business from Lake Oswego, Oregon. She is passionate about everything Texas, politics, and the law world. She plans to attend law school after graduation and continue on as an attorney for a corporation.


    Campus Leadership: Alpha Chi Omega Sorority, John V. Roach Honors College, TCU International Justice Mission, College Republicans, Pre-law Club


    Notable Awards: Dean's List, Provost Scholar


    Julia Murray

    Fort Worth, Texas

    Julia was born and raised a Horned Frog here in Fort Worth, but never thought she would attend TCU until learning about the amazing political science program! Now she is a junior, a member of the Honors College, majoring in political science and philosophy, minoring in French, and loving every second. Her hobbies include playing piano, writing music, climbing, yoga, and board games!


    Campus Leadership: John Butler Interfaith Fellow for the TCU Office of Religious and Spiritual Life, Chief Administrator for the TCU Philosophy Club, TCU Lead Now Facilitator (Fall 2019)


    Notable Awards: John V. Roach Honors College, AddRan Academic Achievement Scholarship recipient, Dean’s Scholarship recipient, Dean’s List


    Laura Nicolescu

    Frisco, Texas

    Laura is a junior from Frisco, Texas. She is a double major in Political Science and History with a minor in Middle East Studies.


    Notable Awards: TCU Scholar, Dean’s Scholarship, Dean’s List


    Audrey Payne

    San Antonio, Texas

    Audrey was born in Carrollton, Texas and moved to San Antonio shortly afterward. She graduated from Claudia Taylor "Lady Bird" Johnson High School summa cum laude in June of 2017. She is a political science and general music double major at TCU and plans to attend law school after graduation.


    Campus Leadership: Secretary for Kappa Kappa Psi honorary band fraternity, Frogs First Leader, member of National Residence Hall Honorary, former member of Frassati Frogs (freshman Catholic leadership group), member of Leadership Scholars program


    Notable Awards: Chancellor's Scholar, three time earner of the gold Presidential Volunteer Service Award, Dean's List, winner of the 2017 Wisdom Award for Public Speaking Excellence

    Kennedy Senise

    Alta Loma, California

    Kennedy is a junior Political Science and Criminal Justice double major with a minor in Spanish. She has a passion for traveling and meeting new people to gain different perspectives on the diverse world we live in. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in law enforcement or an international position where she can make a difference in the lives of others.


    Campus Leadership: TCU Leaps Service Site Director, Kappa Alpha Theta Intramural Chair


    Notable Awards: National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Dean's Scholarship, Dean's List

    Sally Stockett

    Media, Pennsylvania

    Sally is a junior Political Science (International Relations) major with minors in Geography and Middle East Studies. She is from Media, Pennsylvania and hopes to attend law school after graduation. She is the side events director for St. Jude Up 'til Dawn at TCU and works part-time as a hostess at a local restaurant. Her hobbies include traveling, fitness and writing!


    Campus Leadership: St. Jude Up 'til Dawn Executive Board


    Notable Awards:  TCU Dean's List, TCU Scholar, John V. Roach Honors College


    Miranda Sullivan

    Des Moines, Iowa

    Miranda is a political science and religion double major from Des Moines, Iowa. She also has a minor in classical studies and an emphasis in women and gender studies. After graduation, she hopes to attend law school and have a career advocating for others.


    Campus Leadership: Co Chair of Community Outreach for TCU Dance Marathon Pastoral Care Lead for Disciples on Campus


    Hanna Storey

    Castle Rock, Colorado

    Hanna is a junior Political Science and Child Development double major. This past summer she studied abroad in the country of Jordan. She has a passion for traveling and learning of diverse cultures. After graduation, she hopes to attend law school and eventually be a child advocacy attorney. She has a passion for believing in the child as they are the future.


    Campus Leadership: Hope Connection 2.0 Buddy, TCU Day of Service Director, Kappa Alpha Theta, Pre-Law Society, AFCC Student Member


    Notable Awards: Mary Volcansek Award, Dean’s List National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Golden Key Society


  • Class of 2022

    Meet the Students

    Jonathan Benzick

    Colleyville, Texas

    Jonathan is a sophomore from Colleyville, TX majoring in Political Science and French and is minoring in Communication Studies. He has a passion for American politics, having served as a congressional intern for Congressman Jodey Arrington (TX-19). After graduation, he plans on attending law school and would like to pursue a career in the legislative branch.


    Campus Leadership: Model UN, Concert Band, Honors College Member


    Notable Awards: Deans List, TCU Scholar

    Matthew Dena

    Fort Worth, Texas

    Matthew was born and raised in Fort Worth, Texas. Prior to attending TCU, Matthew was homeschooled and competed in Speech and Debate and a variety of sports. As a TCU student, Matthew is a political science and philosophy double major. He plans to attend law school after graduation.


    Campus Leadership: Resident Assistant in Foster Hall, Vice President of TCU Roundnet (Spikeball) club, member of the TCU table tennis team, Student Government Representative for 2018-2019


    Notable Awards: Chancellor's Scholarship; TCU Scholar; Dean's List

    Peter Donaldson

    Mount Pleasant, South Carolina

    Peter is a Political Science major with a double minor in Business and Spanish. He loves to travel, be outside, and learn. His Christian faith gives him his purpose in life to love, serve, and show grace to everyone he can. He really enjoys his major because it enables him to critically think about topics that matter. Peter is an extrovert, so he loves being around people. His family and friends are extremely important to him. He absolutely loves TCU because of the people he has met, the opportunities he has been given, and growth he has experienced.


    Campus Leadership: IJM, RUF, TCU Sailing Club, Beta Theta Pi, Dream Outside the Box

    Claire Fuchs

    St. Louis, Missouri

    Growing up as a Belgian-American, Claire was exposed to a plethora of languages. She heard French, Dutch, German, and English as a child, though she has only retained French, English, and a little German. She loves languages and has continued studying them. To this day, Claire has studied Russian, Arabic, Mandarin, Pashto, and Farsi/Dari, and plans on improving all of these and studying more. Her current major is Political Science, with minors in Mandarin and French. In her free time, She loves weight lifting, boxing, running, playing soccer, playing with refugees, studying in a coffee shop, or sleeping:) This summer, she will be interning at the American embassy in Rabat, Morocco, and she could not be more excited!


    Campus Leadership: Chinese Club, French Club, Arabic Club, Model UN, NET Refugee Volunteer, Refugee Services of Texas Intern, Rec Center Lifeguard, Arabic tutor



    Lizzy Harris

    Albuquerque, New Mexico

    Lizzie is a sophomore Political Science major and a Chinese and Spanish double minor on the pre-law track from Albuquerque, New Mexico.


    Campus Leadership: Kappa Alpha Theta, JV Roach Honors College


    Notable Awards: TCU Scholars, Deans Honors List

    Paige Maho

    Santa Barbara, California

    Paige is from Santa Barbara, California! She grew up with younger triplet brothers, so her life was never boring. She was very involved in my high school's Mock Trial team, and they won the California State Championship. Because of Mock Trial, she was fortunate enough to intern for a criminal courts Judge in Santa Barbara for the past four years, which inspired her to want to go to law school and become a Prosecutor. At TCU, she is majoring in Political Science with a double minor in criminal justice and history because she loves learning about why our country is unique and how it brought us to where we are today, while also becoming more educated on our American criminal justice system, so she feels more prepared heading into her career and the next stage in life.


    Campus Leadership: Paige is involved in her sorority, Alpha Chi Omega. She helps create and operate their largest philanthropy event during the year. She is also a member of the TCU's Moot Court team, which involves writing legal arguments centering around a fictitious case using real Supreme Court cases. Another organization she enjoys on campus is the Carter Host organization, which is an extension of the Student Foundation, gives tours to football recruits at TCU.

    Ellen Swanson

    Kansas City, Missouri

    Ellen is a Political Science and Philosophy double major on the pre-law track.


    Campus Leadership: Sigma Kappa Sorority


    Notable Awards: Dean’s List, TCU Scholar

    Grace Vanderslice

    Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

    Grace is a Sophomore Political Science and Pre-business double major with an Italian minor. Her passions include Jesus, her two dogs, intentional conversations with those who have differing viewpoints, and oat milk lattes. After graduation, Grace hopes to pursue a masters in foreign service and work in international politics.


    Campus Leadership: TCU Dance Marathon Exec, Sigma Kappa sorority, Antioch Community Church, JV Roach Honors College

  • Alumni

    Meet the Students

    Alexa Aragoñez

    Texas A&M University, Bush School of Government

    Class of 2016

    Cole Browndorf

    Vanderbilt University Law School

    Class of 2017

    Christian Johnson

    Texas Tech University Law School

    Class of 2016

    Alli Mather

    Pepperdine School of Law

    Class of 2016



    Hayley McCurdy

    Moritz Fellow for Esperanza International

    Class of 2017

    Megan Tholen

    William & Mary Law School

    Kelsey Ritchie

    LBJ School of Public Affiars

    Class of 2017

    Matt Miller

    Fulbright Scholar in Malaysia

    Class of 2016

    Ethan Murray

    Fulbright Scholar in India 

    Class of 2016

    Maddie Reddick

    Harvard Law School

    Class of 2016

    Stephanie Shady

    Ph.D. student at University of North Carolina.

    Class of 2016

    Alayna Sublet

    AmeriCorps VISTA.

    Class of 2016

    Morgan Williams

    UVA Law School

    Class of 2018


  • members' Intern/Work experience

    Corporate Finance Intern for Westminster City Council

    Legal Intern at Steve Gordon and Associates

    Legal Assistant and Mellina and Larson, PC

    Intern for Adira Foundation

    CBS of Fort Worth

    CBS/Face the Nation

    Judge Kevin Yeasy

    Law firm of Nichols, Jackson, Dillard, Hager and Smith Municipal Defense

    City of Dallas, City Attorney

    Duhham and Jones Criminal Defense Firm

    Fort Worth Sister Cities

    Peace Corps.

    Assemblyman Brian Maienschein (CA-77)

    Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52)

    San Diego Mayor, Kevin Faulconer

    UC San Diego Health, Government and Community Affairs

    Greg Abbott's Re-Election Campaign

    TX HD93 Matt Krause

    Greg Abbott Re-Election Campaign

    State Rep. Matt Krause

    Inter-American Defense Board

    Government Affairs Department

    The Basketball Embassy

    Aldi District Manager

    National Legal Aid and Defender Association

    RA for Dr. Bouche and HumanTraffickingData.org

    RA for THORN: Digital Defenders of Children

    Texans for Greg Abbott

    Congresswoman Kay Granger

    Texas GOP

    Illinois GOP

    Senate Judiciary Committee/Ted Cruz

    Civic Literacy Internship for 352nd Court, Clerical Assistant at FW Law Firm

    Campaign Intern for Tarrant County Democratic Party

    Research Assistant for Gale Mattix

    Wilson Center with the Global Women’s' Leadership Institute

    Washington DC Internship Program

    Hammond Young Immigration Law

    Government Affairs Internship

    Human Resources at GILLIG

    Republican National Convention

    Republican Leadership Initiative Fellow for Texans for Greg Abbott

    Naman Howell Smith and Lee, PLLC

    Hart Health Strategies

    Congresswoman Veronica Escobar

    Beto O'Rourke U.S. Senate Campaign

    Bernie Sanders 2020 Presidential Campaign

  • Distinction Chairs

    Dr. Michael Strausz

    Distinction Faculty Chair

    Dr. Strausz's research focuses on Japanese politics, Japan’s immigration policy, and the role of norms in international politics. He teaches a variety of courses in comparative politics, international relations, research methods, and Asian studies. Dr. Strausz graduated from Michigan State University’s James Madison College and earned his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Washington in Seattle. He lives in Benbrook, Texas with his spouse and their two children. In his free time, he enjoys cooking, hiking, and schmoozing.

    Dr. Adam Schiffer

    Distinction Faculty Chair

    Dr. Schiffer came to TCU 17 years ago after earning his PhD in political science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His recent book, Evaluating Media Bias, can help you win arguments with your annoying uncle who clutters your social-media feed with rants about the news. He teaches classes on the news media, public opinion, and American political geography. When not political sciencing, he enjoys travel, landscape and bird photography, pop and indie-rock music, and the company of his wife Becky and their several pets.

    Tyler Grijalva

    Distinction Student Chair

    Tyler Grijalva is a senior from El Paso, Texas. He was elected Distinction Student Chair in April of 2019. He is currently applying to the part-time MBA program at TCU and the TCU College Advising Corps to work as a full-time college advisor at a local Fort Worth public high school.  Tyler has worked for the Chancellor's Scholars office at TCU for the last three years, and he is currently an intern for Texas State Senator Beverly Powell. On his free time, he enjoys listening to NPR, watching basketball, and spending time with his friends.