Dr. Jim Franke retired from the Department of Political Science at Kansas State University this May. Dr. Franke has been an invaluable member of the department and the K-State family for 34 years, and has played a number of important roles for the university. He served as Director of the Survey Research Unit of the Institute for Social and Behavior Research from 1990 to 1994. He was Director of the MA program in the department from 2009 to 2012. Since 2012, he has been the Director of Graduate Studies in the department. In the latter capacity, he led a transformation of the department’s nationally accredited MA in Public Administration (MPA) program. Following student, alumni, and other stakeholder input, the program’s curriculum was revised to become more practitioner-focused and more useful for aspiring public administrators. A new MPA Alumni Advisory Board was established and a wide range of important practitioner focused activities and connections were developed.
Jim is also known as both an outstanding and exacting teacher. Students have long appreciated his ability to take make complicated methodological material accessible and understandable. Franke also won the William L. Stamey Award for Undergraduate Teaching Excellence twice! Jim has also contributed to the profession through his research. He is the author of multiple articles in peer reviewed journals, and most recently has contributed knowledge on pedagogy in the discipline of political science. To say that the department and the college are grateful for Dr. Franke’s many contributions to the university is an understatement.
Thank you to Dr. Franke for his 34 years of service to the political science department and to KSU! We wish him all the best in his retirement.