March 27, 2017 Newsletter

The spring semester of the 2016-17 academic year is now past midterm, and students should be consolidating their plans for the summer and preparing for the coming academic year.  Here is some information that may be useful as students conclude their spring semester.
First, please note the March 31 deadline for upperclass students to withdraw from a course or choose the P/NP grading option; first-year students have until May 1.  By March 31, all second-year students and beyond, including all transfer students, must decide whether to complete their courses for regular letter-grades, choose the P/NP grading option, or withdraw from a course.  After that date, they will continue to have the option of doing a complete withdrawal from all of their courses for the semester until the last day of classes.  While first-year students have more time to decide about P/NP and course withdrawals, it is better for them to make these decisions sooner rather than later so they can allocate time to their remaining letter-graded courses appropriately.
Second, Summer Term course registration begins April 3.  Please note that Professor Joseph White will be offering his course POSC389 Special Topics in American Politics and Policy:  The Battle of the Budget
Third, Fall Term course registration begins April 10.  Registration for fall semester courses opens for January 2018 degree candidates on Monday, April 10, with each subsequent cohort of students being able to register two or three days later (you can find the full schedule here). 
I strongly encourage our POSC majors and minors, as relevant, to meet with their advisors in our department.  Most of our faculty treat these meetings as a condition for lifting their advising holds in SIS, but more importantly, advising in our department is taken seriously.  Our faculty discuss with each student their past course history, the trajectory of their future courses, across more than just one semester, and provide detailed advising about off-campus study (e.g. in the Washington Semester Program), study abroad, and internship and research assistantship opportunities.  For POSC majors with an additional major, our faculty help those students map out future semesters to meet requirements for both majors.  For those students who would like additional advising, I am always available, as Department Chair, to discuss their courses and future plans.  Students can easily sign up for an appointment with me by clicking on the link on my webpage.
Important Upcoming Events.  I want to share with you the range of excellent political science professors who will be speaking at the Center for Policy Studies Friday Lunches in the coming weeks.  Professor Mark K. Cassell, Department of Political Science at Kent State University, will be speaking about German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Challenge:  Managing Trump, Putin, and a Million Syrians, on Friday, March 31.
On April 7, one of our own, Professor Joseph White, Luxenberg Family Professor of Public Policy, and Director, Center for Policy Studies, will speak on an enormously important and very timely topic:  Trump, the Budget, and Health Care.
On April 14, Professor Juscelino F. Colares, Schott-Van den Eyden Professor of Business Law and Associate Director, Frederick K. Cox International Law Center, will speak on Brazil’s Political Crises
Finally, on April 28, our colleague Professor Kelly McMann, Associate Professor of Political Science, and Director, International Studies Program, will speak on Putin’s Russia.
I strongly encourage our students to schedule time to see our colleagues at work, presenting their own research, and to see these excellent professors outside of the classroom.  We have outstanding scholars in our department and in northeast Ohio generally, and the topics presented in these last weeks of the spring term are timely and, again, highly consequential.
Interested in Graduate School in Political Science?  We also have outstanding alumni in our Department.  One alumnus, Kevin Reuning (CWRU POSC 2010), is returning to CWRU on March 29.  Kevin is currently completing his doctoral work as a graduate student in the Department of Political Science at the Pennsylvania State University.  This past summer, Kevin was back in Cleveland with a research team from Penn State (headed by my co-editor and colleague Professor Lee Ann Banaszak), surveying protesters at the Republican National Convention.  Kevin was also a student in POSC322 Political Movements, and he will be speaking to this year’s class on Wednesday, March 29, in Thwing 302, at 12:45pm.  He will also be speaking in Mather House 100 at 4:30pm that same day, on graduate school and graduate studies in political science.  All POSC students are welcome to attend.  Please add this event to your calendar if you are interested in meeting Kevin (or in learning more about graduate study in political science).
And for those students who are interested in attending graduate school in political science, they may be interested in this, a ranking of graduate schools offering advanced degrees in political science.
A Final Reflection on Women’s History Month.  This month is also the 30th anniversary of the appointment of Patricia Kilpatrick, the first woman to serve as a Vice President of CWRU (this is also the 90th anniversary of her birth in 1927 and the first anniversary of her death in 2016).  An alumna of the College for Women, Pat was a tireless advocate for women, for women’s education, and for CWRU (which was exactly what her car’s “vanity” license plate stated).  She was a good friend to me, and her friendship and the support of the Flora Stone Mather Alumnae Association have been a joy to me, as the holder of the Flora Stone Mather Chair, endowed by the Association.  For those interested in learning more about Patricia Kilpatrick, they can see her interview here, and her obituary here.  Thinking of Pat and missing her during Women’s History Month.
With all best wishes,

Karen Beckwith, Flora Stone Mather Professor
Chair, Department of Political Science, Case Western Reserve University


General Announcements


  • It’s never too early to start thinking about next semester! Take a look at the Fall 2017 Political Science courses.
  • Please consider the attached Hebrew classes offered during the Fall 2017 semester.
  • Ohio Association of Economists and Political Scientists will hold their annual meeting September 15-16. Students are invited to submit a full-length paper to present their research at the conference. More information is available here.
  • Stay up to date with the department by following our Twitter feed! Check it for day to day opportunities and information!
  • Like us on Facebook! Our department will be regularly posting events, opportunities, and general information to our page!




Friday Lunch: Energy Storage: A Key to Sustainability
March 24, 12:30-1:30p.m., KSL Dampeer Room
Join Chemistry Professor Daniel A. Scherson in discussing the challenges in storing energy for future use, as well as current progress and possible solutions.

Cleveland Humanities Festival
March 18-April 24
The theme of this year’s festival is immigration and will feature lectures, exhibits, films, tours, plays, and academic symposia.

Drug Problems: Is there a solution to Ohio’s Opioid Crisis?
March 24, 12:00p.m., The City Club
This conversation will focus on possible solutions to Ohio’s current opioid epidemic and how to save future generations from addiction. Nonmember tickets are $35.

Imagination and Diaspora in Peter Balkian’s Poetry and Prose
March 24, 4:30-5:30p.m., TVUC Ballroom A
Peter Balakian, Pulitzer-prize winning Armenian American poet and writer and the Donald M. and Constance H. Rebar Professor of Humanities at Colgate University, will discuss the impact of the post genocide Armenian diaspora in his poetry and his memoir Black Dog of Fate

A Tale of Two Americas
March 25, 2:00-3:00p.m., Cleveland Public Library
Anand Giridharadas will be addressing some of society’s challenging issues and pressing concerns – A Tale of Two Americas TED Talk. A short Q&A will follow.

Lori Stokes Remembers Louis Stokes
March 26, 3:00p.m., Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage
Explore the late Louis Stokes’ groundbreaking political and civil rights legacy as Lori Stokes, co-anchor of New York City’s Eyewitness News This Morning shares memories of her father and excerpts from his biography, The Gentleman from Ohio. Tickets are $12.

Muslim in America
March 27, 5:00-6:00p.m., TVUC
Join author Ayad Akhtar in discussing what it’s like to be a Muslim immigrant in America.

Whose Country Is This? Undocumented Migrant Children and Youth in the United States after the 2016 Presidential Election
March 28, 4:30-6:00p.m., TVUC Ballroom A
Following the 2014 surge of Central American and Mexican children across the U.S.-Mexican border and the 2016 election of a president committed to ending illegal immigration, Professor Susan Terrio of Georgetown University charts the ongoing legal, political and social challenges they face after apprehension by immigration authorities and release into U.S. communities.

Reimagining Relations with the Middle East
March 28, 5:45-8:30, The Union Club
This talk will focus on the shifting attitudes of American partnerships in the Middle East.

From Refugee to Neighbor: Screening and Discussion
March 28, 7:00-8:30p.m., Cuyahoga County Public Library, North Olmsted Branch
Through the showing of several, short documentary-style films, this presentation opens a community conversation about Cleveland’s changing diversity in culture and population, thanks to the arrival of refugees to our community.

Life, the Universe, & Hot Dogs: Water
March 28, 7:30p.m., Happy Dog Detroit Ave.
Bryan Stubbs from the Cleveland Water Alliance. The Cleveland Water Alliance is a network of leading corporations, regional universities, research institutions, public agencies, water utilities and stewardship organizations in Northeast Ohio that serves to coordinate, facilitate and foster economic development through a water innovation cluster.

From Here to There: Immigrant Investigation
March 29, 12:00-1:00p.m., Cleveland History Center for the Western Reserve Historical Society
Unfold the story of a migrant or refugee family’s journey to Northeast Ohio from overseas or from another US region.

American Immigration Policy in Historical Perspective
March 29, 12:00-1:00p.m., Clark Hall 206
This lecture will examine the history of immigration policy and how immigrants and immigration affect domestic economic, social, and political issues.

Law and Anti-Semitism in the Current Climate
March 29, 4:30-5:30p.m., Moot Courtroom
Kenneth L. Marcus, founder and president of the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law, will address the recent upsurge in anti-Semitism, globally and domestically, as well as the legal tools that are available to fight it. 
I Learn America
March 29, 4:30-7:00p.m., TVUC
This documentary provides a yearlong glimpse of five immigrant teenagers’ lives at a high school in Brooklyn, NY.

Cleveland International Film Festival
March 29-April 9
Check out a variety of culturally and artistically significant films, some of which relate to current affairs and politics.

The Pitch: Presenting Your Research to Strangers

March 30, 4:30-5:45p.m., AW Smith 329

Get tips on how to explain your research in a one minute re-cap. Presented by Drs. Bill Doll and Barbara Burgess-Van Aken.

Friday Lunch: Merkel’s Challenge: Managing Trump, Putin and a Million Syrians
March 31, 12:30-1:30, KSL Dampeer Room
Professor Mark Cassell of Kent State University will discuss the challenges German Chancellor Angela Merkel faces both in Europe and in her own leadership role at home as she prepares for re-election.

When Away Becomes Home: The Refugee Crisis and Opportunities for Welcome in Northeast Ohio
March 31, 12:00-1:30p.m., MOCA
Join this discussion about the stories of individuals and families who have fled their homelands and resettled in Northeast Ohio.

State of Our Nations: Canada-United States Perspectives on Law, Policy, and Politics in Tumultuous Times
March 30, 5:00-7:45p.m., CWRU Law School Upper Rotunda (Dinner and Distinguished Lecture)
March 31, 8:00a.m.-6:00p.m., Moot Courtroom (Conference)
This year’s Canada-United States Law Institute Conference will bring together law, policy, business, and government experts from Canada and the United States to analyze the new dynamics of cooperation and competing priorities between our two countries. This is free for students.

The Paris Climate Agreement: What Now?
April 13, 5:30-7:15p.m., The Union Club
Student tickets are $5 and must be purchased in advance.
Susan Biniaz, a lead U.S. negotiator on the agreement, will join CCWA to discuss what lies ahead for the U.S. commitments to combating climate change.

Employment Opportunities

WJCU Radio Station Director
As a staff member of the Tim Russert Department Theatre Arts, the Director of WJCU acts as the University’s primary agent in overseeing the operation of WJCU FM, a federally licensed Class A noncommercial/educational FM broadcast facility that serves the university as a co-curricular program and media outlet.

AmeriCorps VISTA Program at CityLink Center
VISTA stands for Volunteers in Service to America and provides an opportunity for individuals to commit to a year of service in a non-profit agency with exposure to multiple different social services. CityLink is seeking eager young professionals who are interested in building the capacity of our current programs to serve more clients and empower volunteers, while confronting the issue of poverty within the city of Cincinnati.


Grant Opportunities


Research Grant Opportunity
Phi Beta Kappa will be awarding grants of up to a few hundred dollars to assist College of Arts and Sciences students in their research. Applications are due April 17.

Internship and Fellowship Opportunities

Summer Program Internship
Case Western Reserve is seeking student interns to work on a fellowship program hosting 25 young, African professionals. Interns will help with administrative duties and interact with the fellows as local resource guides and by helping them mediate cross-cultural challenges, navigate the American lifestyle and learn about Cleveland and its communities. The internship will take place from July 14-31 and interns will be compensated $2,500. Applications are due April 15.

Congressional Science and Engineering Fellowship
The fellow spends one year working as a special legislative assistant on the staff of a member of Congress or congressional committee. Applicants must have either a Ph.D. or master’s degree with three years of experience.

FairVote is one of the nation’s leading election reform organizations. With strong support from interns and a national network of volunteers, FairVote’s hard-working and energetic staff advances our mission: achieving “the way democracy will be.” This internship is located in Washington, D.C.

Conservation Summer Internship
The Conservation Intern will work with our Conservation staff to help create healthy communities through land conservation and restoration. This is a paid internship.

Center for Policy Advocacy Internship
Interns will work with the Government Affairs and Campaign programs. Project topics may include legislative research and memo writing. This is a paid internship and takes place in Washington, D.C.

Center for Strategic and International Studies
A variety of research internships are available associated with Asian and Middle East programs.

The Tim Russert Fellowship
The Tim Russert Fellowship will be awarded to one motivated, passionate graduating senior interested in pursuing a career in political journalism. The Fellowship is a one-year, paid position in the NBC News Washington, D.C. Bureau. The fellow will work on a rotational basis in several areas of the Washington Bureau including “Meet the Press” and the NBC News Political Unit.

Previously posted opportunities can be found on the department webpage. Please make sure to check regularly as to not miss approaching deadlines!


A Little Extra…


  • POSC Major Jacob Sandstrom recently attended the 58th Air Force Academy Assembly. Read about his experience below!I sincerely thank the Department of Political Science for making it possible for me to represent Case Western Reserve at such a prestigious, pertinent conference.
  • Serving as a student delegate at the 58th Air Force Academy Assembly, entitled “Inside the Wire: American Security and Cyber Warfare,” was a phenomenal opportunity to discuss the future of defense in the Information Age. Air Force Cadets and student delegates from top US universities engaged in roundtables, forums, simulations, and panel discussions with high-ranking officials, including the NSA’s Director and General Counsel, as well as private sector leaders, including executives from AT&T and BakerHostetler, among many others. Each session explored varying technical and political topics, attempting to strike a balance between liberty and security in an increasingly connected world. From the Assembly, I take away that even in an increasingly polarized world, civil discourse on critical issues such as cyber security leads to increased knowledge among our nation’s current and future leaders.


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