UMW to Host 88th District House of Delegates Debate

Debate Image

Candidates for the 88th District of the Virginia House of Delegates participated in a debate at the University of Mary Washington on Wednesday, Sept. 18. … [Read more...]

Leadership Program Gives UMW Students a Taste of Political World

Sean Simons, Meghan Hobbs and Brendan Oudekerk are among 18 college students and recent graduates chosen for the Sorensen Institute's College Leaders Program

At the Sorensen Institute of Political Leadership’s College Leaders Program, party lines are set aside. Participants are not allowed to disclose their political affiliations to each other. “It bonds everybody together,” Brendan Oudekerk said. “It is really refreshing to get along with everybody…and know we are working toward common goals. Each person brings different qualities to the table.” Oudekerk, a 2012 graduate of the University of Mary Washington, and UMW seniors Meghan Hobbs and Sean Simons are among 18 college students or recent graduates who were selected for the four-week-long summer program held at the University of Virginia. The College Leaders Program, now in its eighth year, brings together youth leaders from across Virginia with a focus on ethics, bipartisanship, public policy and civic engagement. The Sorensen Institute was founded as the Virginia Institute of Political Leadership in 1993 in hopes it would identify and bring together Virginia’s emerging … [Read more...]

Students Explore New Cultures with UMW’s Summer Trips

Students in the 2012 Psychology in Europe program visit the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam.

Carol Quinn has been back in the United States for less than a week and she is already thinking of her next trip to Europe. The University of Mary Washington senior was one of nine students who visited London, Amsterdam, Wurzburg, Munich and Vienna with the Psychology in Europe study abroad trip. The students, led by Associate Professor of Psychology Dave Kolar, spent two weeks at historical and cultural sites relevant to the study of psychology. “The trip inspired me to return and do some of my own traveling in Europe,” Quinn, a psychology and sociology major, said. “I’m eager to go back. I wasn’t ready to leave at all!” This summer, more than 100 students are studying abroad, either as part of UMW faculty-led trips, or through programs at other universities or organizations. Members of the UMW field hockey team recently traveled to Italy with Coach Lindsay Elliot to train and compete on an international scale. Some trips have become UMW staples, like “European … [Read more...]

UMW Student, Winner in National Political Science Essay Contest

Callie Kyhl web

University of Mary Washington senior Callie Kyhl has been named one of the winners in the national essay competition sponsored by the Naval Academy Foreign Affairs Conference (NAFAC). Kyhl is the fourth Mary Washington political science or international affairs major in eight years to be a winner in the NAFAC contest.  She was named first runner-up for her essay “U.S.- China Competition in the South China Sea: A U.S. ‘Eclipsed’ or ‘Resurgent’.” The essay is part of a semester-long independent study with Jack Kramer, distinguished professor of political science and international affairs. “This is a truly outstanding and very well deserved achievement on Callie’s part especially given NAFAC’s preeminence for  annually bringing together several hundred of the ‘very best and brightest’ students from throughout the United States and abroad to discuss and debate  contemporary pressing issues in American national security policy,” Kramer said. “It is also testimonial to the outstanding … [Read more...]

UMW Graduates Receive Fulbright Scholarships

Eric Halsey (right) and Peter Wingrove are recipients of 2012-2013 Fulbright grants

University of Mary Washington graduates Eric Halsey and Peter Wingrove have been selected to receive U.S. Fulbright grants for 2012-2013. They become the ninth and 10th students, respectively, to receive the prestigious awards in the university’s history. “The Fulbright committee is extremely proud of Eric and Peter’s accomplishments and wish them well in all their future pursuits,” said Nabil Al-Tikriti, associate professor of history. “Mary Washington has now had eight winners in the past five years, and looks forward to several more in the future.” Eric Halsey Through the Fulbright, Eric Halsey will study nationalism theory and Balkan history at Sofia University in Bulgaria. He will work with the history department at the university to research the policies of Alexander Stambolinski’s government from 1919 to 1923 and will take intensive Bulgarian language courses. Halsey, a native of Herndon, Va., currently is a student at Central European University in Budapest and plans to … [Read more...]

UMW Hosts National Security Lectures at Dahlgren Campus

UMW's Dahlgren campus will be the home of a permanent exhibit about women in Dahlgren

The University of Mary Washington Dahlgren Campus Center for Education and Research is hosting a series of lectures this spring and summer on national security challenges facing the U.S. The lecture series is a joint effort of the Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Military Affairs Council, the Joint Warfare Analysis Center (JWAC) and UMW. The lectures provide Department of Defense and contractor employees overviews of international security in regions of interest and spark thought-provoking discussions. Strategic Command Headquarters, JWAC’s parent command in Omaha, Neb., and other regional Department of Defense installations, are able to participate in the lectures through video teleconferencing. On Wednesday, May 2, the lecture series will continue with “The Baltic States: Strategic Considerations & American Foreign Policy” by Kramer. Elizabeth Larus, professor of political science, will present “Strategic Challenges in Northeast Asia: Implications for U.S. … [Read more...]

UMW Student Interns Assist Fredericksburg With Housing Report

Brianna Gavigan and Brian Auricchio are interns with the City of Fredericksburg

University of Mary Washington seniors Brianna Gavigan and Brian Auricchio are burning up the phone lines in an effort to shed light on housing practices. As interns with the City of Fredericksburg, they’re calling hundreds of residents to make sure housing opportunities here are fair, regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, gender/sex, familial status or disability. The effort is instrumental to a report the city must submit to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). As part of the process, Gavigan and Auricchio must survey five percent of the Fredericksburg population, either in-person or over the phone. They also hope that two upcoming public forums will help them fulfill their requirements. Fredericksburg is required to submit the report every five years in order to receive federal community development block grants.  In the past, the city used outside research consultants to handle the survey and report. “It is critical that the report be … [Read more...]

UMW Political Science Students Collaborate on Book Project

(From left) Ian Huff, Assistant Professor of Political Science Chad Murphy, Chris Blough and Eric Stortz in Monroe Hall

As a political science and pre-law philosophy double major, Michael Behrens figured he would spend much of his senior year writing extensive research papers. He never expected to collaborate with his professor on writing a book. Behrens and three fellow seniors -- Chris Blough, Ian Huff and Eric Stortz -- have teamed up with Assistant Professor of Political Science Chad Murphy to research and write chapters for a book on presidential rhetoric. The project is one of more than dozen research initiatives in the university’s innovative undergraduate research program. This semester’s undergraduate projects delve into such issues as women in Islam; statistical consulting for after-school programs; stress, guilt and eating; the effects of Atrazine in zebra fish; and the effects of exercise and estrogen on mouse hearts. Still Behrens isn’t surprised to be part of such a challenging project at UMW. “That’s just the environment that the school’s attitude cultivates,” he said. “If … [Read more...]

UMW Political Science Professor Discusses ‘Arab Spring’ on Public Radio Show

Ranjit Singh, associate professor of political science

University of Mary Washington Associate Professor of Political Science Ranjit Singh will reflect on his experience with Bahrain’s royal family in relation to last year’s uprising in the Middle East during an interview on the “With Good Reason” public radio program beginning Saturday, January 7. The interview can be heard on January 7 at 4:30 p.m. on WCVE 88.9 FM and on Sunday, January 8 at 7 p.m. and Monday, January 9 at 12:30 a.m. on WAMU 88.5 FM. The segment, “Reflections on Arab Spring,” is expected to be online beginning the week of the show at http://withgoodreasonradio.org/2012/01/reflections-on-the-arab-spring/. From 1992 to 1993, Singh worked as a ghostwriter for one of the royal family members of Bahrain. He was allowed access to members of the royal family and got to know them on a personal level. Now, 20 years later, Singh is sharing his experiences with the man who would become the minister of information of Bahrain and a key figure in the country’s most recent … [Read more...]

UMW Political Science Professor Presented in Washington D.C.

Lester_Emile_11

Emile Lester, assistant professor of political science, has researched and written about the intersection of religion and education, along the way developing his argument that not only is teaching religion in public schools possible, it is necessary. Through a case study of Modesto, Calif., the first school district in America to require a course in world religions, Lester works to dispel the notion that secularists and conservatives can’t work together. Instead, he argues in “Teaching about Religions: A Democratic Approach for Public Schools” that balanced world religions courses are essential for fostering tolerance among young people. Lester discussed the book at a forum on Tuesday, November 1 at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. The forum, “God in the Classroom: Exploring the Place of Religion in Public Schools,” was presented by the Religious Freedom Project at the Newseum and Wesley Theological Seminary. The evening also included the Washington D.C. premiere of the … [Read more...]