President Gerald R. Ford created what is now the Gerald R. Ford Institute for Leadership in Public Policy and Service at Albion College in 1977. The Institute provides an opportunity for undergraduate-level students to explore policy issues more fully and to prepare future leaders in all fields through course work, service, internships and personal mentoring.
The Ford Institute concentration is open to students with a serious interest in public service, regardless of their academic major. The program includes courses in ethics, public policy and communication, as well as a range of choices from courses in economics and management, English, modern languages, history and political science. Students must be admitted to the Ford Institute to pursue this concentration. Visit the Ford Institute website for information on the application process.
The major in public policy provides students with an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the mechanisms by which government interacts with stakeholders for the common good. It draws on the principles, practices, and research methods of the social sciences and philosophy to provide students with the theoretical and analytic skills relevant to today's most pressing global issues. The major prepares students for careers in government, for private-sector careers related to government policy, or for careers in the non-profit sector. It also provides strong preparation for students planning on attending law school or earning a master's degree and/or Ph.D. in public policy, public administration, public health or social policy.