Ideopolis Volume 2, Issue 1, Fall 2014

  • Published on

  • View

  • Download

Embed Size (px)


The Newsletter of the Political Science Department, Rhode Island College


  • Volume 2, Issue 1 Rhode Island College Fall 2014

    Start Planning Early: DC Internship OpportunitiesEach spring, the Political Science department announces the availability of six weeklong internship opportunities in Washington, DC. The winning students intern with a member of the Rhode Island congressional delegation in DC and receive $800 from Student Community Government for travel and lodging. Political Science majors Adam Fague and Morgan Whittier write about their experiences this past summer:

    I interned in Senator Sheldon Whitehouses Washington, DC office. Much of Senator Whitehouses work deals with climate change and environmental issues, so the bulk of my work focused on those areas. I was able to read constituent mail, attend a Senate Finance Committee hearing and write a memo for the senator, assist with a climate change event at the Capitol Visitors Center and attend a climate change rally that included speeches from Senator Whitehouse, Senator Warren, Senator Boxer, Representative Waxman, and Senator Sanders, among others. Near the end of my week, Senator Whitehouse spoke with all of the interns about how important it is as a lawmaker to act in a professional manner and

    to recognize that people benefit from a government that is not gridlocked. Working with the Senator and his team of people who are dedicated to legislative efforts to fight climate change was a great experience. Adam Fague '15 DC was the best experience of my life! Not only did I fall in love with the atmosphere, I found a new home. This experience alone confirmed my feeling of interest in moving there after graduation. Working on the Hill has opened so many opportunities for me. In the political science field of study, when you are applying for positions, having an internship with Hill experience sets you above those who do not. The experience alone was amazing. I was responsible for dealing one-on-one with constituents who were calling, faxing, emailing, or physically visiting to express their concerns. I was also able to attend Congressman's Cicilline's committee

    hearings, which was awesome. I saw first-hand what is going on in the country and even with foreign affairs. This experience was life-changing and taught me a lot about politics, what it takes to succeed, and what job opportunities in this field entail. Morgan Whittier '15


    idea noun \-d-, -d also -()d- or -d\: a thought, plan, or suggestion about what to do; an opinion or belief; something that you imagine or picture in your mind

    polis noun \p-ls\: a Greek city-state; broadly: a state or society especially when characterized by a sense of community

  • Volume 2, Issue 1 Rhode Island College Fall 2014

    Meet our Faculty: Seth Dixon Dr. Seth Dixon is the most recent full-time geography hire. The California native, along with his wife, Julie, and their three children moved to New England in 2009. I see regional charm in the local quirks and relish it rather than wish Rhode Island were more like other places. My whole family certainly feels that Rhode Island has quickly become home. Dr. Dixon came to Rhode Island College by way of Penn State (Ph.D., 2009) and Brigham Young University (MS, 2004, BS, 2001) and has worked as a childrens librarian and junior high school teacher before feeling drawn to higher education. Dr. Dixon enjoys watching his kids play soccer, traveling, and playing volleyball.

    With a background in K-12 education, Dr. Dixon was asked by National Geographic to coordinate statewide geography education initiatives through the Rhode Island Geography Education Alliance (RIGEA). RIGEA is a great organization that allows me to maintain my professional interest in higher education, but also to collaborate across the grade levels with outstanding educators that all share the same goal of elevating the quality and quantity of geographic education in the Ocean State. In addition to the alliance, he curates online resources on a site titled Geography Education which is designed to share news articles, videos and other resources that teach geography in the classroom.

    Geography Education, Latin American cultural geographies, and urban spaces that are used to represent and create identities are his main research interests. Currently, he is working on a project on the cities of Middle America and their regional distinctiveness as well as several other initiatives.

    He regularly teaches Regional Geography (GEO 200) and sees it as one of the more important classes that all college graduates should have under their belt. Regional Geography is designed to help students to develop an interest and awareness of global issues and to know a little bit about every place on this planet; as globalization increasingly pulls places together, this global understanding becomes all the more critical for all college graduates.


    Dr. Seth Dixon, Geography

  • Volume 2, Issue 1 Rhode Island College Fall 2014

    Geography News On September 13th, RIGEA held a fall social in the RIC Student Union. Participants had the opportunity to experience Bridgewater State University's EarthView, a rare, 25 foot tall

    inflatable globe that allows individuals to view the surface of the Earth from the inside. BSU geography professor, Dr. Vernon Domingo, and RIC geography professor, Dr. Seth Dixon presented at this event.

    In the KNOW about INGOS?

    The INGOS Program introduces students to international nongovernmental organizations (like Amnesty International, Doctors without Borders and Greenpeace), and explores the many ways these important organizations are shaping the world. The program offers two tracks: a certificate and a minor; both tracks are open to all students. For more information, contact Professor Robyn Linde at

    Course in Focus: INGOs 302: INGOs and Social Entrepreneurship Professor Robyn Linde Spring 2015 Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4-5:50pm What is a social entrepreneur? A social entrepreneur is someone who comes up with creative solutions to important problems facing the world today. From community organizing for human rights to global efforts to curb climate change, social entrepreneurs apply innovative strategies to real-world challenges. In INGO 302, students have the opportunity to become social entrepreneurs as we partner with a local nongovernmental organization to make social change. Instead of a research paper, students work in the community on a project of their choice or design to have an impact in Rhode Island communities and on campus. POL 203 is a pre-requisite. Students do not need to be in the INGOs program to take this class.


    Geography Corner

    Oh, the PLACES You'll Go... with GEOGRAPHY!

    INGOS Corner

    Dr. Dixon and EarthView

  • Volume 2, Issue 1 Rhode Island College Fall 2014

    The PERKS of Being a PUB AD Major!

    PA News This semester, Professor Leazes is experimenting with adding a new service learning component to Public Administration 301: Foundations of Public Administration. Students are being offered the opportunity to provide to local public organizations ten hours of service undertaking an administrative task an agency needs to have completed. To date, the following agencies have signed on: The City of Cranston Planning Department, the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities, AS220, the Providence Department of Arts, Culture and Tourism and the North Burial Ground Project at RIC. This activity is designed to provide introductory students some hands on experience in a public agency without the pressures that come with a full blown internship. If this experiment works then more opportunities will be created for future classes. Public Administration majors take note: Public Administration (PBAD) 325: Politics of Public Management will be offered Monday-Wednesday 8-9:50 AM. This course is required for all Public Administration majors and is offered every other Spring so it will not come around again until Spring 2017. The class is going to focus in large part on creating a budget transparency scorecard and manual for use by citizens and communities in Rhode Island. Dr. Leazes reports there will be plenty of fun and energizing activity to ensure everyone will be awake by 8:05 AM!

    Dr. Leazes is soliciting student assistance in creating a Public Administration section of the Political Science web site. This would offer the opportunity to work with faculty and RICs web development office. If interested, email

    Hillary Costa '14 (Communication double major) is a marketing coordinator for the Care New England Health System. She primarily works for Women & Infants Hospital writing press releases, managing social media, developing patient education and research literature as well as content strategy for the website and local TV and print media. Lucas Dieter and Storm Lawrence '14 were both awarded fellowships to complete the two year Masters in Public Policy at the University of Connecticut.


    Public Administration



  • Volume 2, Issue 1 Rhode Island College Fall 2014

    Matthew Larson '14 was admitted to the University of Arkansas Law School. Patrick Pride '14 was admitted to Boston College's graduate program in political science. Britni Gorman '13 is currently a graduate student at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, in the History/Archives Track. She also works at the City Archives in Providence. Zainab Ilumoka '13 was admitted to the Gender, Leadership and Public Policy Program at UMASS Boston. Jonathan Lamantia '13 is in his second year of law school at University of Connecticut. He interned with a Providence judge last summer, was accepted onto the Connecticut Insurance Law Journal and is currently working on a Note on the use of Social Media Data in Underwriting. Jesse Psl Rhinehart '13 was selected to participate in the Democracy and Diversity Initiative in Wroclaw, Poland run by the New School for Social Research--where Jesse is a grad student--under the tutelage of Foucault scholar, James Miller. Samantha Winters '13 completed her Masters studies at the School of African Studies (SOAS) of the University of London, and is currently completing her thesis in Ann Arbor, MI. Daniel Larson '12 was admitted to Suffolk Law School. Curtis Pouliot-Alvarez '12 is in his last year of law school at Roger Williams and is a full-time Student Attorney with the Federal Public Defender Office of Rhode Island. Katrina Chaves '10 (Women's Studies double major) is directing an LGBT documentary and attending the University of Massachusetts, Boston, where she is pursuing her Masters in Social Work. Emmanuel Echevarria '10 (History double major) was nominated by the Rhode Island Health Insurance Commissioner to sit on the Health Insurance Advisory Council to the Office of the Health Insurance Commission to provide the consumer perspective on barriers consumers and small businesses face when attempting to access health coverage. He is the RIREACH Program Manager at the RI Parent Information Network. He and his wife, Ashleigh ('13, Psychology), welcomed their son, Emmanuel, in 2011, and their daughter, Arabella, in February of this year. Jennifer Magaw '09 (Women's Studies double major) graduated from Roger Williams University Law School in 2012 and is currently a public defender in New Bedford, MA. Julie Lima Boyle (English double major) '94, a former RI Teacher of the Year, spent the last week of September in Shanghai and Shenzhen, Peoples Republic of China, as part of a delegation of four secondary school teachers selected and sent over by the U.S State Department. She gave a talk entitled Every Day Could Increase Student Achievement through Formative Assessment to an audience of 3700 Chinese teachers in Shanghai.

    Faculty FocusCatching up with the Folks in Craig-LeeThomas Schmeling is in his sixth year as the Department Chair. This fall, hes teaching Courts and Public Policy and, for the second time, our new methods course, POL300. As noted elsewhere here, in the Spring he will be teaching a topics course (POL350) in which students will participate in a moot court. In May, Dr. Schmeling presented a paper at the Law & Society Association meeting in Minneapolis. The paper, titled The Old is Dying and the New Cannot be Born: Doctrinal Incoherence, Minimalism & Constitutional Change, considers breakdowns in the coherence of Supreme Court opinions that occur in periods when the Justices are moving toward a change of constitutional doctrine but are not yet prepared to make the change complete.


  • Volume 2, Issue 1 Rhode Island College Fall 2014

    Richard Weiner's article Les Reciproqueteurs: Post-Regulatory Corporatism in Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning earned him speaking invitations to both the Centro des Estudios Politicos y Constitutionales and the Universidad National de Education Distancia in Madrid, the 2014 Montreal World Congress of the International Political Science Association,NYU, and the 2014 Glasgow Conference of the European Consortium on Political Research. Spin-off papers on Negotiated Network Connected Contracts also published in 2014 in The European Legacy and TELOScope, and have led to an invitation to the prestigious conference on institutional economics and law of the World Interdisciplinary Network on Institutional Research in Lugano, Switzerland. Dr. Weiner is also completing an extended Working Paper for the Harvard Center for European Studies with Professor Ivn Lopez of Universidad Carlos III in Madrid on the Indignados/Podemos anti-austerity movements and political party in Spain. An earlier version was well-received at the 21st International Conference of Europeanists in Washington DC in March. Professor Weiner has been asked to serve on the Program Review Committee of that Conferences 2015 Meeting in Paris.

    NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS STUDY ABROAD! The London Course (a six credit study abroad experience run every other summer by Professor Rich Weiner) is already forming for 2015. There is an 18 day study abroad component in London and Paris, with side trips to Cambridge, Oxford and Brighton from 13 July through 30 July. Included are visits to the British Parliament, art and history museums, and tours of diverse neighborhoods like Brick Lane, Hampstead, and Notting Hill. This is POL 445 European Political Geography (3 credits) in which students are out walking and learning how to read the history and built environment of these two cities. The study abroad component is preceded on campus by POL 444 (3 credits) British Politics & Cultural Studies between middle May and middle June which prepares students for the trip. As in the past, students reside in London for two weeks at The Westbourne (operated by Anglo Educational Services, Ltd.) near the Kilburn Park Tube on the Bakerloo Line (15 minutes from the center of London) and in Paris at the Hotel Villa Modigliani (equidistant between the Luxembourg Gardens and Montparnasse). Students interested...