Although COVID-19 has presented unique academic and professional challenges for students, the Department of Political Science is still working hard to make their long-standing internship program still accessible and fulfilling. Learn about these four students’ internship experiences—and how the department helped them along the way.
Political science PhD alum Dr. Sheryl Lightfoot was recently appointed as the North American Representative on the United Nations Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Her vision is for the rights of Indigenous peoples to “become as common sense and taken for granted as other human rights are so that it would be unthinkable to violate them.”
Gene Sperling (BA '82, political science) will serve as the coordinator overseeing the implementation of the newly signed COVID relief law. Sperling served as a top economic official in the last two Democratic presidential administrations.
University of Minnesota Political Science Professor Tanisha Fazal has been named a 2021 Andrew Carnegie Fellow. The Andrew Carnegie Fellows Program’s goal is to support scholarly research in the humanities and social sciences that addresses important and enduring issues confronting society. Fazal is one of 26 fellows selected this year out of 311 people nominated.
“We often think of nuclear weapons as being a relic of the Cold War. I think...that that isn't the case,” says Assistant Professor Mark Bell. He explains his research on nuclear weapons—and how countries behave when they have access to them.
University of Minnesota Twin Cities junior Gurtaran Johal has been named a 2021 Truman Scholar. The Truman Scholarship, one of the most prestigious awards for undergraduates, recognizes outstanding leaders who plan to devote their careers to public service.
The University of Minnesota Senate voted to rename the Diversity and Social Justice course theme to “Race, Power and Justice in the United States” (RPJ) and make it a requirement for all undergraduate students on the Twin Cities campus. Associate Professor Kathryn Pearson of Political Science points out that a quarter of students have graduated without taking a course in the social justice theme.
“Local politics...shapes everything about how we live our day-to-day lives,” explains political science assistant professor Jane Sumner. She discusses how she’s used Reddit threads to collect data on local politics and understand its effects on daily life.
Lulete Mola (BA ’14, political science) is a social change strategist and chief strategy and innovation officer at the Women's Foundation of Minnesota. Her purpose is to build power with individuals, families, and communities for real change. What follows is extracted from recent reflections she offered on how she realized her purpose in powering social change.