July 15, 2024

UMW Continues National Political Science Winning Streak

Sixty footnotes, 22 sources, 19 pages, one prize-winning paper.

Recent UMW graduate Dillon Schweers ’21 won in the ‘best undergraduate paper’ category of the Pi Sigma Alpha political science honor society’s national student writing contest. Mary Washington students have outperformed most other schools in this competition for decades.

Recent UMW graduate Dillon Schweers ’21 won in the ‘best undergraduate paper’ category of the Pi Sigma Alpha political science honor society’s national student writing contest. Mary Washington students have outperformed most other schools in this competition for decades.

For its author, recent University of Mary Washington graduate Dillon Schweers ’21, it was quite the process – determining an area of interest, digging in to narrow the scope, poring through research, and writing and rewriting drafts.

The workload was worth it, said Schweers, a political science major now in his first year at William & Mary Law School.

“It’s about sharpening your writing skills,” he said. “At the end of the day, that’s what employers and grad programs are looking for.”

His piece, “Violence Against Journalists in Mexico,” was named best undergraduate paper in this year’s Pi Sigma Alpha national writing contest. It’s the latest in a string of victories for Mary Washington students, who have claimed first-place or runner-up spots in the competition 11 times in the past two and a half decades, outperforming nearly every other four-year school in the country.

“The success of our political science majors, year after year, proves just how much they excel,” said Professor Stephen Farnsworth, advisor for Schweers’ award-winning project. “UMW students regularly defeat those studying at the nation’s most famous universities.” Read more.