This Month's Headlines:
- GRADUATING SENIORS
- APPLICATIONS OPEN FOR TORONTO STUDY ABROAD COURSE DURING SUMMER 2020
- CAREER PATHS OF POLSC ALUMNI
- FACULTY IN THE NEWS
- STUDENT GROUP NEWS
- FACEBOOK PAGE
1. GRADUATING SENIORS
If they complete all course requirements, political science majors Shyler Abbey and Samuel Zdunski are scheduled to graduate this month. Also scheduled to graduate is sociology minor Heather Vommoro. Shyler is also a psychology major and a Crime, Law, and Psychology minor who plans to pursue a master's degree in psychology next year with long-term plans to pursue a Ph.D. in one of her major fields in political psychology. Sam will continue to perfect his barista skills in the short-term and plans to attend graduate school in public policy next year.
We extend best wishes to our graduating seniors and with their plans for the future.
2. APPLICATIONS OPEN FOR TORONTO STUDY ABROAD COURSE DURING SUMMER 2020
North American Politics (PL SC 299/499) will again be offered as a Penn State study abroad program between May 17–June 13, 2020, and taught by Dr. Robert Speel. The course, which takes place on the Ryerson University campus in downtown Toronto, combines Penn State and Canadian students in one classroom for discussions about the comparative politics of the United States and Canada and on international relations between the two countries. Among the topics to be discussed will be a comparison of the development of separate political cultures, comparisons of government institutions, election systems, federalism, and regionalism, and comparisons of each country's policy approaches toward the economy, health care, gun control, language, free speech, legal marijuana, abortion, medically assisted suicide, and the role of religion in education. Issues important in international relations between the two countries will also be discussed—this includes trade, border security, prevention of terrorism, and control of the Arctic. Class excursions will visit the Ontario Parliament Buildings and Fort York, site of an important battle in the War of 1812.
Costs will be tuition and fees for 3 credits of Penn State University Park in-state tuition (even for out-of-state students) and a $950 program fee that covers the cost of the Ryerson University residence for one month. The first ten accepted Behrend students to apply will get automatic scholarships of $325 toward the program fee cost, making it $625. Funds for those scholarships come from a donation by Penn State Behrend alumna and Erie attorney Barbara Welton and the School of Humanities and Social Sciences Endowment Fund. Generous and plentiful financial assistance is also available from Penn State for summer study abroad programs and from the Behrend financial aid office. Financial assistance with living costs in Toronto is available from the PSU Student Engagement Network at engage.psu.edu. Students pay for their own food costs while in Toronto. There are kitchens in the residence, and there are several nearby fast food courts.
More details and the application form can be found on the Global Penn State website or the Political Science page on the Penn State Behrend website.
If you have questions, contact Dr. Robert Speel at [email protected], or make an appointment with Ruth Pflueger, Director of Study Abroad and the Learning Resource Center at Lilley Library or [email protected]. Brochures are available at the H&SS School Office, 170 Kochel Center.
3. CAREER PATHS OF POLSC ALUMNI
Every few years, the Political Science Program at Penn State Erie researches the career paths of our alumni. This semester, we have provided some of the results of our September 2019 study in each monthly newsletter.
There are 466 living POLSC alumni since the first major graduated in 1977.
We were able to determine the current jobs of 378 (81%) of those alumni.*
Of those 378 alumni, the most common career paths are:
- Business professionals (n=116, 31%)
- Government service (n=76, 20%)
- Law (n=74, 20%)
- Education (n=52, 14%)
- Politics and policy (n=15, 4%)
- Other (n=66, 17%)
Note that numbers add up to over 100% because 20 alumni were counted in two categories, mostly government attorneys in both the law and government service fields.
*A few older alumni have retired – they are counted in the fields of their most recent jobs.
Among the 52 alumni who work in education are:
- 12 social studies teachers
- 4 who work as teachers in other fields in elementary or high schools
- 5 university professors
- 3 who are pursing graduate degrees in order to teach
- 15 college or university administrators
- 13 who work in other parts of the education sector
Positions held by our alumni in education include:
- Social Studies teacher, Millcreek School District
- Social Studies teacher, Iroquois School District
- Social Studies teacher, Erie School District
- Professor of Public Administration, Florida State University
- Social Studies teacher in suburban Rochester, NY
- Social Studies teacher in Bradenton, FL
- Social Studies teacher in suburban Pittsburgh
- Social Studies teacher in Baltimore, MD
- Director of Risk Management and Safety, University of Notre Dame
- Student Affairs Officer, UCLA
- Associate Director of Student Affairs, Penn State Behrend
- Academic Adviser, Penn State Behrend
- Reference Librarian, University of Connecticut Law Library
- Assistant Principal, Forrest City Junior High, Arkansas
- Doctoral Programs Coordinator, Stevens Institute of Technology School of Business
Among the graduate schools attended by our alumni since 2000 are:
- University of Pennsylvania
- Cambridge University (England)
- The Johns Hopkins University
- University of Virginia
- University of Buffalo
- The George Washington University
- Georgetown University
- Louisiana State University
- Fudan University (Shanghai, China)
- University of Windsor (Ontario, Canada)
- Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (Geneva, Switzerland)
- University of Delaware
- Cleveland State University
- University of Akron
- Mercyhurst University
- Penn State Harrisburg
- University of South Carolina
- Edinboro University
- University of Illinois at Chicago
- Oregon State University
- University of Connecticut
- University of Pittsburgh
- Pepperdine University
- University of Leeds (England)
- Cornell University
- Binghamton University
4. FACULTY IN THE NEWS
- Dr. Kilic Kanat, Associate Professor of Political Science, is on sabbatical during this academic year. Earlier this month, as part of the NATO Summit in London, England, Dr. Kanat participated in a panel organized by the Turkish government about Turkey's role in NATO at the Naval and Military Club in London.
- Dr. Robert Speel, Associate Professor of Political Science, was interviewed for an article in the Sunbury (PA) Daily Item this month about the Trump impeachment process. Next semester, Dr. Speel will be speaking at the Jefferson Educational Society in Erie about the history of presidential impeachments and at Jefferson Society satellite locations in Fairview and North East on the subject of gerrymandering.
- Dr. Lena Surzhko-Harned, Assistant Teaching Professor of Political Science, was interviewed earlier this month on NPR's All Things Considered about the impact of the U.S. impeachment hearings on Ukraine. Last month, she participated with Behrend Chancellor Ralph Ford on a WPSE radio show about Ukraine. Dr. Surzhko-Harned also presented her paper, “European Values in Europe: Myths and Reality,” which was invited for the panel “Reform and Change in Post-Maidan Ukraine” at the 51st annual meeting of the Association of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies in San Francisco, California, on Nov. 24. Her book review of New Generation Political Activism In Ukraine: 2000-2014, by Christine Emeran was published in Vol. 36 of Harvard Ukrainian Studies.
5. STUDENT GROUP NEWS
The groups are all making plans for next semester.
- College Republicans will host Change My Mind tables in alternating weeks. To get involved, contact President Andrew Griglio at [email protected].
- To get involved with the Behrend Political Society, contact President Rachel Mills at [email protected].
- To get involved with Model United Nations, contact President Carlos Mora at [email protected].
- To get involved with College Democrats, contact President Tiffany Zinn at [email protected].
6. FACEBOOK PAGE
All students and alumni are invited to like the Penn State Behrend political science Facebook page to get updated news and find out about upcoming events.
Best wishes to everyone on final exams and during the entire holiday season!