Originally Posted by camisadelgolf
This intrigues me a little. I'll look into it more. Do you have any experiences with it?
In about another week or so, I'll have a grad degree in Political Science, so here's what I can tell you:
At the grad level, the quantitative stuff is pretty rigorous. If you can make it through the initial methods class(es), you can get into the good stuff, where you'll either gravitate towards American or the Comparative/International side of the discipline.
(Or if you're a true sadist, you'll get into the Methods.)
I went into the program for some different reasons for most. However, in your case, it might open some doors and get you thinking about some things that most folks don't really consider. Things like interning for an elected official, getting involved with a lobbying group, working with a non-profit legal group, etc. See how law is made, how the judicial system works, see how a regulatory agency works, that kind of thing.
If you'd be going back at the undergrad level, a Bachelor's in Political Science would be a nice way to get yourself into a Masters in Public Admin program at the graduate level. There are a gazillion opportunities in government branches/agencies when you look at county, city, state, and federal levels. The MPA would also serve you well at a nonprofit / non-government organization.
As for the timing of everything, I'd say that this is the perfect time to start a program. Governments are slashing budgets in response to the crappy economy. Most signs point to a rebound some time in 2010. If that holds, then you'll start seeing most government agencies begin filling the positions in 2010-2011 that they are currently holding vacant or eliminating. With a degree in sight and an internship under your belt, you'd be hitting the market at a good time to find a full-time job with a lot of long-term potential.