THIS MONTH'S HEADLINES:
1. INTERNSHIPS AND CAREER EVENT ON MARCH 30
2. ANNUAL POLITICAL SCIENCE DINNER AT THE OLIVE GARDEN ON APRIL 28
3. FALL 2016 COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
4. AN EVENING WITH TWO STATE SENATORS ON CAMPUS ON APRIL 19
5. HILLARY CLINTON CAMPAIGN COORDINATOR TO VISIT CAMPUS ON APRIL 5
6. US SENATE CANDIDATE VISITED CAMPUS
7. DR. GAMBLE TO BE ON SABBATICAL
8. FACULTY IN THE NEWS
9 POLITICAL SCIENCE MAJOR AWARDED GERMAN FELLOWSHIP
10. FACEBOOK PAGE
On Wednesday, March 30, at 5 p.m. in the Metzgar Center, the Academic and Career Planning Center will be presenting a career and internship exploration forum for political science and history majors. Joe Lengieza, Director of Marine Operations for the U.S. Brig Niagara, and Political Science Major Ashley Solo will present information about local internship experiences. Students will be guided through the career exploration process, and some of the careers of Behrend history and political science alumni will be discussed.
The annual political science dinner will be held at The Olive Garden on Peach Street on Thursday, April 28, at 7:00 p.m. Graduating political science majors are the guests of honor, but all are invited to attend, and most political science faculty members should be there as well. Friends and significant others are also welcome. We use the regular menu, and people pay for their own meals. Dressing up is not necessary. To attend, RSVP to Dr. Speel no later than Tuesday, April 26.
PL SC 007 (GS) - Contemporary Political Ideologies: All the political -isms in one course. Why leftists think Reagan was a fascist, reactionaries think Obama is a socialist, communists think liberalism is too conservative, why Leninism isn't the real Marxism, why religious fundamentalists think liberalism is godless communism, nationalists think everyone else is just inferior, and multiculturalism wishes it could use the word "science" and make it stick. All are welcome. This course has no prerequisites. PL SC 007 will be taught by Dr. Celise Schneider-Rickrode.
PL SC 111 (GH) Debating the Purpose of Government: This course will involve an integrative look at the mega issues confronting the United States: wars, violence, who runs the country, inequality, poverty, gender, environment, religion, science, and culture wars. These are interrelated issues and involve aspects of politics, economics, engineering, business, law, art, music, literature, philosophy, psychology, sociology, religion, and science. Lecturers will have interdisciplinary experience (academic and worldly). This course has no prerequisites and will be taught by Rev. Charles Brock.
PL SC 130 (GS, US) - American Political Campaigns and Elections: Whether it's Hillary vs The Donald, or Bernie vs Ted, this course will look at American elections next semester, including discussions of the electoral college, campaign advertising strategies, blue states and red states, alternatives to the current US election system, and why and how the United States sometimes elects people and parties who didn't get the most votes. It is recommended that students have taken PL SC 001 before taking this course. PL SC 130 will be taught by Dr. Robert Speel.
PL SC 132 (GS, IL, Other Cultures) - The Politics of International Intolerance: This course asks a simple question: why people hate other peoples whom they often do not know? More exactly, the course looks at the political expression of racial, religious, and ethnic movements that seek to eliminate certain groups from national life. The course also looks at the debates about “multiculturalism” outside the United States, why do some countries seem to experience organized violence against minorities, while others do not. Finally the course examines the rise of “cosmopolitan” viewpoints that consciously seek a more inclusive idea of social identity. This course has no prerequisites. PL SC 132 will be taught by Dr. Zachary Irwin.
PL SC 431 - Ancient, Medieval, and Renaissance Political Theories: Come to this class and find out why 1) it's Socrates' fault you have to take gen. ed. courses, 2) why nobody dresses up like monks at the Medieval Faire, 3) why utopian political orders are so irresistible to try at home, and 4) how one might recognize the signs of dystopia right before he/she gets arrested by the authorities. Togas optional. Prerequisite: PL SC 007 or PL SC 017. PL SC 431 will be taught by Dr. Celise Schneider-Rickrode.
PL SC 439 - The Politics of Terrorism: This upper level course examines the persistence of terrorism as a catalyst and a substitute for other forms of political change. The course places particular emphasis on the origins of recent terrorist activity, its scope and means of expression, and the moral claims of its adherents. While affirming the absolute evil of terrorist violence against victims, the course seeks to ask why many people condone terrorism against governments and innocent citizens. Prerequisite: PL SC 014. This class will be taught by Dr. Kilic Kanat.
PL SC 472 - The American Legal Process: Students will be exposed to our nation's bifurcated court system, including a thorough look at both the Pennsylvania court system as well as our federal court system. This would encompass analysis of the minor judiciary through courts of original jurisdiction, and of course, appellate review. Students will be taught important legal terminology including the meaning of jurisdiction, burdens of proof, stare decisis, etc.. Exploration of our adversarial system will cover areas in both civil and criminal law and important differences between these two areas of law. Civil law subjects of torts and contracts will be explained. By contrast, a study of criminal law and the 4th, 5th and 6th amendments will be undertaken. Understanding the differences between the two areas of law, the differing presumptions, standards of proof, consequences and so on will be imperative. Fundamental Constitutional principles embraced by our founders and carried on today will be studied, including a review of our Bill of Rights. Areas of family law and juvenile delinquency and dependency may also be considered. Students will be expected to leave the course with awareness of differences between civil and criminal law, why our system of justice, although not perfect, works, and to be able to articulate and be familiar with legal terms and concepts associated with our American Legal Process. Prerequisite: PL SC 001. PL SC 472 will be taught by Judge John Trucilla of the Erie County Court of Common Pleas. Judge Trucilla, who has served in his position since 2002, is a former Erie County Assistant District Attorney, and during the 1990s, he served as Assistant United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania in the US Department of Justice.
PL SC 489 - Public Administration: This is an ideal course for students who wish to learn more about the management of government agencies or are seeking a career in public service. Some of the administrative decision case studies that may be discussed in the course involve a 50-year coal mine fire in Pennsylvania, the decision to go to war in Iraq, the space shuttle Columbia disaster, and a Philadelphia mayor dropping a bomb in a residential neighborhood. Prerequisite: PL SC 001. PL SC 489 will be taught by Sheila Sterrett. Ms. Sterrett is the Northwest Pennsylvania Regional Manager for US Senator Pat Toomey. She is the former Director of Government Affairs for the Northwest Pennsylvania Manufacturer and Business Association, and is a former legislative assistant for Pennsylvania State Representative Karl Boyes.
AFR 110 (GS, IL, Other Cultures) - Introduction to Contemporary Africa: What distinguishes the continent of Africa from other regions of the world? Although Africa is home to many diverse groups, countries, cultures, and forms of governance, popular perceptions often paint the continent as one in flux, prone to wars, conflict, and dictatorship. Consequently, this course will examine what Africa is and is not. As a course on contemporary Africa our readings and lectures will focus on major events, political processes, struggles for power, and ongoing challenges of African states since independence. The goal of this course is to provide a more comprehensive understanding of political and economic development of Africa as part of the field of Comparative Politics. AFR 110 has no prerequisites. AFR 110 will be taught by Dr. Naaborle Sackeyfio.
SOC 406 - Sociology of Deviance: If you commit an act of deviancy and no one is there to see you commit the act, did you actually commit an act of deviancy? Find out the answer to this question in the Sociology of Deviance class. In this class we will discuss the social construction of deviance and explore the players who have power to define and control deviance. The course will focus on both criminal behaviors (breaking the law!) and non-criminal deviant behaviors (sexting, pornography, UFO believers, tattoo collectors and much more). We will also touch on some of the reasons why people deviate from social norms and why others freak out when others deviate from societal expectations. The course prerequisite is either SOC 012 or SOC 013 or SOC 005. SOC 406 will be taught by Dr. Nicole Shoenberger.
CAS 478 - Contemporary American Political Rhetoric: CAS 478 is the study of the role of strategic communication as a foundation of modern American politics. The class provides opportunities to track and critically deconstruct 2016 campaigns through real-time projects. It also presents opportunities to examine the link between representative democracy, social media and personal well-being. The class incorporates examples from all levels—local, statewide, and national—to illustrate the communicative choices confronted in contemporary political campaigns. Diverse aspects of campaign communication, from buttons and yard-signs to the rapid expansion in use of digital media, are explored as are contemporary communication principles and practices such as functions, stages, communicative styles, public speaking, debates, interpersonal communication, political advertising, and the use of new communication technologies. There are no prerequisites. CAS 478 will be taught by Dr. Colleen Kelley.
On Tuesday, April 19, the Political Science Society will be sponsoring An Evening With Two State Senators at 6:00 p.m. on the Behrend campus, in a room to be announced soon. State Senator Sean Wiley (D-Erie area) and State Senator Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pittsburgh area), a Penn State Behrend political science alumnus, will be discussing prominent state issues, including the recent budget deadlock in Harrisburg. The forum will include plenty of time for audience questions, and all Behrend students, faculty, and staff members are invited to attend. For more information about the Political Science Society, contact President Nicole Malinowski.
On Tuesday, April 5, at 7:00 p.m., a state coordinator for the Hillary Clinton for President campaign will be speaking to interested students or community members on the Penn State Behrend campus in a room to be announced soon. For more information, contact College Democrat Ashley Solo.
On Wednesday, March 23, John Fetterman, the mayor of Braddock, PA, and a Democratic candidate for US Senate this year, spoke at Bruno's at the invitation of Behrend College Democrats. His appearance was shown on all local news channels. Fetterman is challenging Joe Sestak and Katie McGinty in the Democratic primary on April 26 to run against Republican Senator Pat Toomey in November. A photo from the event appears on the Penn State Behrend Political Science Facebook page. For more information about Behrend College Democrats, contact President Domonic Mathews.
Dr. John Gamble, Distinguished Professor of Political Science and International Law, has been granted a sabbatical for the 2016-2017 academic year. During his sabbatical, he will be in Erie much of the time, but will travel quite a bit for conferences and for research. His research will expand on his treaty database, as well as examine the broader issue of the visualization of international law, especially how it can improve teaching. While he will not teach formal courses during the year, it will be possible for students to work with him on this research.
Dr. John Gamble, Distinguished Professor of Political Science and International Law, attended the Annual Convention of the International Studies Association in Atlanta, Georgia, earlier this month. At the conference, he organized, co-chaired, and wrote the organizing paper for a panel on “Visualizing International Law as a Vehicle for Exploring Peace." Participants included professors from Texas A&M University, the University of New South Wales, Fortham University, and the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Gamble also chaired a panel on the topic, “What Difference Does International Law Make?” Participants included professors from Georgia State University, Cardiff University, University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill), University of New South Wales, City University of New York, and University of Rio de Janeiro.
Dr. Kilic Kanat, Assistant Professor of Political Science, continues to publish columns for Daily Sabah, an English-language newspaper in Turkey, most recently one titled "After 13 Years, Another March of Crises in US-Turkish Relations?"
Dr. Nicole Shoenberger, Assistant Professor of Sociology, and Nicole Rosen, Lecturer in Sociology, along with psychology professors Charisse Nixon and Melanie Hetzel-Riggin received a grant from the Behrend Humanities and Social Sciences Endowment Fund for Behrend's Prevention of Aggression Resource Center (PARC) to study "Mentoring as a Means to Foster Service Learning and Promote Positive Youth Development." The professors in PARC also will be presenting a poster on April 1 at the Society for Research on Adolescence (SRA) in Baltimore, MD. The poster presentation is called, "Resiliency and Social Support Mediate the Relationship between Hopelessness and Risky Behaviors in Teenagers." PARC is organizing a conference on resiliency at Behrend that is occurring on June 24, 2016. The website for more information and about how to submit an abstract is: https://p537138757650783.typeform.com/to/JIJ5x7
Dr. Robert Speel, Associate Professor of Political Science, was interviewed for an article in the Erie Times-News earlier this month about Donald Trump's presidential candidacy.
Political Science Major Megan McConnell has been awarded a Cultural Vistas Fellowship for a summer internship in Berlin, Germany. Only four American university students are accepted into the German program each year. The Fellowship covers all costs of travel and accommodations for the internship program. Congratulations to Megan!
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.