In 1973, two enterprising students graduated from Bucknell with an interdepartmental major they designed with the help of their professors. This was the beginning of what eventually became the International Relations major and the International Relations Program that supported it. Professors from various departments played a crucial role in advising students who were interested in crafting a degree that drew on a number of disciplines to process and understand international affairs.

From 1973 to 1984, international relations remained an interdepartmental major and enrolled and graduated an increasing number of students. In 1984, International Relations officially became a program with a major and a minor. By 1984, over 100 students had graduated with the interdepartmental major. Another 1100 subsequently graduated with the formalized International Relations major.

Since 1973, there has been a steady growth in the number of courses associated with the degree since its inception and we have seen impressive increases in course enrollments and affiliated faculty. And, in Fall 2009, 25 years after the inception of the IR program, International Relations became a full-fledged department.

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