Missouri State University
Political Science Blog

Is It Hot, Or Is It Just Me?


To help students better understand the impact of global warming on different aspects of their lives, the Model United Nations Club presents a faculty panel on global warming; featuring Dr. Samantha Mosier, from Political Science, Dr. David Mitchell, from Economics, and Dr. Scott Worman, from Sociology/Anthropology.

Join the conversation on Tuesday, October 25th at 7:00 PM in Strong Hall 001.

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Emergency Management in the Real World

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The PLS355/772 class hosted several guest speakers. Sgt Juston Pace of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, an MPA alumni, along with Captain King of the Springfield Police Department spoke to the class about law enforcement. Mercy Emergency Management Services (EMS) visited and provided the students with information about the delivery of EMS in Southwest Missouri and a tour of one of their Advanced Life Support (ALS) ambulances. This week the class visited the Springfield-Greene county public safety center. During that visit they toured the Office of Emergency Management and the 9-1-1 center. Students have the option of observing with these agencies in the field or possible internships.

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Jerry Kendall asks, “Equity in Public Service Delivery, Anyone?”


In the last two months of a one year contract with the City of Republic, Missouri, alum Jerry Kendall is in the final stages of completing a city-wide Self-Evaluation and Transition Plan for the removal of existing architectural barriers to disabled citizens in city-owned spaces. In addition to conducting physical inspections of all public buildings, sidewalks and city parks, the process has included educating City Council members and staff on the many requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, making recommendations for personnel policy changes, writing all new procedural documents for receiving public requests for service, creating a 16 year timeline for the Transition Plan, and conducting a system-wide review of policies and practices. A lot has been accomplished in a very short time.

I feel very fortunate to have been able to make the impact that I have in the first year since graduating from the MPA program. During my time in the MPA Program at Missouri State, my studies and assignments honed my interest in local government, disability law and policy, allowing me to dig deeper into the subject than I ever knew possible. By the time I graduated, I had a job doing exactly what I had wanted to do for years. I have since gone on to become a certified ADA Coordinator and have made many professional contacts in my field of interest (gotta love the networking!).

With the final draft of the City’s first-ever ADA Transition Plan due to completed and ready for City Council approval in early December, I will be ready for my next challenge by the start of 2017. I am excited by the possibilities that lie before me and have begun talking with new municipalities about their needs. With the disability community growing each year, people with my skillset are needed all across the country to stay up-to-date with federal regulations. It’s an exciting time of life, and it’s only the beginning!

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The Digital Humanities and African History

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The 2016 Keynote Address of the Mid America Alliance for African Studies, “The Digital Humanities and African History: Linking Space and Time to Objects and Events,” will be presented by Dr. Henry B. Lovejoy (University of Colorado – Boulder) on Friday, October 21st from 5:00-6:00 PM at Missouri State University in Plaster Student Union 313.

More information about Dr. Lovejoy’s research can be found at The Liberated Africans Project.

This event is sponsored by the College of Humanities and Public Affairs, the Departments of History, Political Science, and Sociology/Anthropology.

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Africa Rising: A Special Presentation by PLS Alumni Steven McDonald


Political Science alumni, Steven McDonald, will be on campus next week for a presentation entitled “Africa Rising: Is it real, what does it mean for Africa’s global role and United States policy?”

Steven McDonald spent four decades focused on peace building, conflict resolution, democracy and governance in Africa, Northern Ireland, Timor Leste and Brazil. He worked with South Africans, including Nelson Mandela, to bring about the change from Apartheid to majority rule in 1994.

Please join us on Tuesday, October 18th at 7:00 PM in Meyer Library 101.

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2016 CHPA Scholarship Dinner

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2016-2017 PLS Scholarship Winners

Always a special night when we introduce scholarship recipients to donors. This year the Political Science department will award over $16,000 in scholarships. In total, the College of Humanities and Public Affairs will award almost $100,000 in scholarships thanks to the generosity of many of those present last night. Especially gratifying for the students to see the support of the University’s President, Clif Smart, and Provost, Dr. Frank Einhellig.

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Apparently someone said something that Tony thought was mildly amusing.

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Update From Gabi Hane

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Working through AmeriCorps VISTA, Gabrielle Hane is a Disaster Resilience Officer assigned to Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri. During her internship she created a policy manual for the organization’s disaster response. Her current assignment includes working with the Spanish speaking community in the areas of disaster resilience and recovery and she recently published a small disaster planning item in a Springfield-based, Spanish language magazine Ocio.

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Rick Schnake: Recognized for Excellence and Reminiscing About Pre-Law in the Late-1970s

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Congratulations to Rick Schnake for being named as a top rated lawyer in intellectual property by American Lawyers Media and Martindale-Hubbell. The full story is here – Neale & Newman. Rick has also been named in the 2016 edition of Best Lawyers In America for Appellate Practice – Best Lawyers.

As much as That 70’s Show feels familiar, it’s still set in Wisconsin. Below, Rick shares some of his recollections of the 1970s at Southwest Missouri State University.
My mom went back to school to finish her teaching degree when I started to MSU in 1975, so we commuted together. I called Dr. Alice Bartee before we went up to pick our classes (by hand, with index cards—no computers back then) and asked her advice on what courses I should take to prepare for law school. She advised me to take her PLS 101. So mom and I both enrolled in it. The first day, Dr. Bartee seated everyone in alphabetical order. Here I was, an 18-year-old freshman, hearing the teacher say “Mrs. Schnake,” then “Mr. Schnake,” and having people look at us like I was crazy for being married to a woman more than twice my age. But I survived, and I think I got an A in the class.

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Pre-Law 1979, Dr. Meyer at Homecoming, Prices in 1979 (Go ahead and click. I dare you!)

In my journalism classes, I was a stringer for the Southwest Standard, mostly writing sports articles. I was secretary-treasurer of the Pre-Law Association (the predecessor to Phi Alpha Delta), and the student body president, Jeff Carter (who went to Northwestern University Law School) appointed me to the Faculty-Student Judicial Commission. My senior year, I knew someone who knew someone who picked me as one of the two student speakers at the Senior Banquet. I still recall sitting in President Duane Meyer’s outer office waiting to see him so that he could read and approve the draft of the speech. Somewhere over there they have a book containing those speeches, which they let me read while I waited.

In the 1978–1979 Ozarko, which was published my senior year, there is also a large photo of me with a sign that I painted. I was a sign painter at Mt. Vernon, which is my home town, and I also was the sports editor and general all-around staffer at The Lawrence County Record. My major was History (for which we forgive him) with a minor in Journalism. I paid my way through MSU (the part not covered by grants and scholarships) by painting signs and working for the newspaper, so fortunately I had no college debt to carry over into law school at Washington University, where I got plenty of it.


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Tony Hammond: A Political Journey From Hickory County to Washington, DC

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1978 Political Science alumni, Tony Hammond, is featured in the Fall 2016 issue of the Missouri State Magazine. Starting his political career with Missouri Congressman Gene Taylor (R-Sarcoxie), Tony now serves on the U.S. Postal Regulatory Commission. He was appointed to the Commission by President George W. Bush in 2002 and reappointed by President Obama in 2013.

To read the full story, follow this link – Tony Hammond

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PLS Welcomes Scholar2Scholar Monica Villa Meza

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The Political Science department is pleased to welcome Sociology major, Monica Villa Meza, as an undergraduate research assistant for Dr. Samantha Mosier for her project “How Narratives Craft Challenges in Alternative Food Market Label Policies.”

The Missouri State University Scholar 2 Scholar Program (S2S) was established to encourage engagement in research and to match undergraduate students to faculty mentors while assisting with faculty research and other creative projects.

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