THIS MONTH'S HEADLINES:
- GRADUATING SENIORS
- FACULTY AND STUDENT AWARD WINNERS
- SUMMER COURSE ON CANADIAN POLITICS
- SUMMER COURSE ON INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
- STUDENT GROUP NEWS
- FACULTY IN THE NEWS
- POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT INTERNSHIPS
- FACEBOOK PAGE
- FINAL NEWSLETTER OF THE YEAR
1. GRADUATING SENIORS
If they complete all degree requirements, twelve Penn State Behrend political science majors are scheduled to graduate next month:
- Maryam Abasbarzy - Will attend Basic Law Enforcement Academy in Washington state with plans to become a police officer in the Seattle area
- Itzel Baez - Plans to attend law school
- Philip Brichacek - Will work for a year and plans to seek a master of public administration degree
- Abigail Burgess
- Richard Burke - Seeking a job in international relations with the federal government with plans to attend graduate school
- Jack Dill - Seeking a job in government and may seek a master of public administration degree
- Andrew Griglio - Plans to attend law school
- John Jarecki - Will attend University of Dayton Law School next year
- Gerard Libra
- Logan Saborsky - Seeking a job in government
- Jack Walker
- Tiffany Zinn - Will continue to work with Planned Parenthood of Western Pennsylvania
In addition, if they complete all degree requirements, five students will graduate with minors in politics and government next month—Rachel Mills, Kristen Neff, Ariana Purcell, Olivia Wickline, and Danielle Wieczorek, and two other students will graduate with minors in both sociology and in crime, law, and psychology—Emma Culbertson and Anna Downey.
Congratulations to all of our graduating seniors, and best wishes with your plans for the future!
2. FACULTY AND STUDENT AWARD WINNERS
- Dr. Lena Surzhko-Harned, Assistant Teaching Professor of Political Science, has won this year's School of Humanities and Social Sciences Award for Excellence in Advising.
- Logan Saborsky has won this year's Outstanding Political Science Major Award.
- John Jarecki has won this year's Zachary T. Irwin Humanitarian Award. The Zachary T. Irwin Humanitarian Award is named for a retired political science professor who spent countless hours and effort during his career and in his retirement to make the campus and community better places.
- John Jarecki also has won this year's School of Humanities and Social Sciences Junior/Senior Writing Award.
Congratulations to all the award winners!
3. SUMMER COURSE ON CANADIAN POLITICS
Due to the cancellation of all study abroad courses, the summer study abroad course in Toronto is going online as a course to learn about Canadian politics and society.
The online PL SC 299 and 499 courses will count toward degree requirements in the political science major and minor. Because of the unknown status of study abroad courses in the upcoming academic year, many degree programs will be willing to count this course toward study abroad degree requirements. You need to check with your adviser to see if that is the case.
The classes will be offered during Summer Session I in May and June. PL SC 299 and 499 will be the exact same course, but the PL SC 499 version will include a research paper.
The format of the course will be a hybrid mix of asynchronous independent study work (assignments and readings that you can do at any time within a week) and synchronous learning (scheduled times for us to meet online to discuss course materials). Course content will compare Canadian and American politics and discuss Canadian-American relations. To make the course into an attempted "virtual" study abroad experience, there will be content related to cultural and historic sites that would have been visited in Toronto during the study abroad program.
Canadian students who previously took joint courses with us will join some online discussions. Some of those former students now work in government and politics in Canada.
The course will cost the lower tuition rates the university is charging for summer remote/online courses this year, which are also lower than the per-credit tuition rates during the academic year.
The University is also offering special financial aid for summer courses this year.
If you would like to take the course, you register via LionPath the same as you do for other regular courses. The course is being offered through Penn State Behrend on the schedule menu under Political Science (PL SC).
If you will still be a Penn State student in May and June 2022, we plan to offer the course in Toronto again at that time, pandemic permitting.
4. SUMMER COURSE ON INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
PL SC 014 - International Relations - will be offered during Summer Session II in July and August. This course is required of all political science majors and is general education GS IL for others.
What causes war and what makes it stop? When is international aid or military intervention effective? Why are some states wealthy and others plagued by poverty and underdevelopment? How does international trade affect developing countries? What can and should states do to protect human rights around the world? This course provides students with the background and conceptual tools to answer these and similar questions. It teaches students to think systematically about the complex relationships that constitute world politics and to critically engage prevailing academic and policy arguments about global affairs. Students are introduced to the international political system as the arena in which states develop foreign policies of cooperation and competition to pursue power, enhance security, and develop economically. They explore how various non-state actors (NGOs, social movements, corporations) and international governmental organizations (UN, IMF, World Bank, WHO) influence interactions among states and between states and their citizens in matters such as interstate and civil wars, terrorism, ethnic conflict, human rights, inequality, global trade, resource scarcity, and climate change.
5. STUDENT GROUP NEWS
The student political clubs have elected new officers for next year. These include:
Model United Nations
- President: Marissa Litzenberg
- VP: Grant Filbeck
- Treasurer: Raul A. Garcia
- Secretary: Lily Rasmussen
- Public Promotions Coordinator: Frank Ruszkowski
- MCC Representative: Dylan Free
- President: Grant Filbeck
- VP: Claire Perritano
- Secretary: Matt Achtziger
- Treasurer/ Social Media: Hali Hartley
- President: Sydni Holt
- Vice President: Hunter Kellar
- Treasurer: Joshua Eger
Behrend Political Society
The Behrend Political Society is currently looking for officers next year. If you might be interested, please contact Dr. Robert Speel at [email protected] or Sydni Holt at [email protected].
6. FACULTY IN THE NEWS
- Dr. Kilic Kanat, associate professor of political science, continues as a regular columnist for the Turkish media source Daily Sabah. In the past month, his columns have dealt with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on international relations, as well as World War Z, Edvard Munch, Albert Camus, Dan Brown, and popular Spanish Netflix show Money Heist.
- Dr. Robert Speel, associate professor of political science, was interviewed earlier this month by Yahoo News about the potential impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canada-US relations.
- Attorney Donald Wagner, lecturer of law, is the solicitor for the Erie City Zoning Hearing Board, which is involved in a major legal and political issue in Pennsylvania about the use of homes for Airbnb in residential neighborhoods. The Pennsylvania State Supreme Court last year ruled unanimously that short-term rentals are not allowed in neighborhoods zoned for single-family residences.
7. POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT INTERNSHIPS
While we don't know yet the availability of summer internships in politics or government or what form those will take, if you need guidance on searching for such positions, please contact the Penn State Behrend Public Policy Fund director.
8. FACEBOOK PAGE
All students and alumni are invited to like the Penn State Behrend political science Facebook page and get updated news and find out about events.
9. FINAL NEWSLETTER OF THE YEAR
This will be the final newsletter of the 2019-2020 academic year. Good luck with final papers and final exams.