The Political Science Association at EIU
The purpose of the Political Science Association is to provide interested political science students with the opportunity to engage in discussions of political issues, to assist students in learning about political science careers, and to encourage student participation in political activities. This group is open to all majors and minors of Political Science as well as any other students interested in Political Science. In essence, you need not be a major or minor to join the PSA, and you also may be either an undergraduate or a graduate student.
It is also a great way to meet others who share an interest in Political Science. Though the organization attempts to analyze events from an objective viewpoint, individual political views inevitably present themselves and have in the past led to some very productive informal debates on the implications of certain events and issues. Thus, this organization should appeal to anyone seeking to analyze the world of politics and government and debate political questions and policy issues in an informal setting (e.g., the meaning of the 2012 Presidential election results; fairness in federal taxes and spending; education reform; U.S. defense policy strategies; the debate over laws and regulations concerning accesss to and use of guns, etc.....).
Additionally, the PSA has organized and participated in many events that aim to inform the general student body about political science and various issues in the world of politics. A highlight of the association's activities this academic year was a PSA-sponsored debate between the EIU campus Democratic Party and Republic Party groups. Representatives of the two groups made their best cases for electing their respective national-level candidates in the November General Election, particularly President Obama and Governor Romney. This event was held on Wednesday, October 24 (7:00 to 8:30 p.m.) in the Lumpkin Hall Auditorium, and it was moderated by Political Science Department faculty member Dr. Jeffrey Ashley.
Earlier in the fall semester, the PSA also assisted the Political Science Department by presenting to a group of first-semester EIU students on the benefits of choosing the PLS Major. This activity was part of the programming for the annual University Foundations’ Academic Foundation Day, and it helped the first-year students to understand the Political Science Major from a first-hand student perspective.
Another major activity for the 2012-13 academic year was a panel discussion which featured four relatively recent Political alumni who spoke on careers in Illinois state government and politics. The alumni represented a wide range of positions and experience, from staffers for the Senate and House Republicans on through a legislative liaison for an executive branch department and the chief government relations officer for a prominent education policy professional association. For more information on this panel, please visit the "Alumni" section on the Political Science Department's website.
The PSA typically meets every week (in Fall 2012, it met on Wednesdays @ 6pm in Coleman 2140). Once again, the organization is open to anyone who is interested in politics, both domestic and international.
Any student interested in joining may contact the Faculty Advisor, Dr. Richard Wandling or the any member of the Executive Board of the PSA: