Kansas State University


Political Science

Category: WINTER 2016 – 2017

A Note from the Department Head

The department has just moved into its new home in Calvin Hall on campus.  We are now in a central location, just across from the newly renovated student union and the parking garage.  We have been eager to settle into our new building because it offers well-appointed common areas where our majors can congregate and build an even stronger sense of community.  We will also have access to two computer teaching labs and three new hi-tech seminar rooms.  As you might guess, the move into Calvin is just one of many exciting developments in the department.  Generous alumni have recently provided support for a new endowed professorship, a new student scholarship, and graduate student travel.  Our faculty have achieved an unprecedented level of professional visibility, with countless publications in the foremost journals of our discipline and invitations to speak at the most prestigious institutions in the US and around the world.  Our graduate program is again ranked #1 in the nation by graduateprograms.com and our undergraduate majors continue to compete for some of the most prestigious scholarships in the country.

As the rest of this newsletter highlights, it is a fantastic time to study political science at K-State.  Please consider stopping in to say hello if you are in Manhattan, or drop us a line to let us know of your accomplishments!

Jeff Pickering


Faculty Invited to Speak Across the World

The American University in Beirut

The outstanding quality of our faculty can be measured in many ways.  One visible measure is the unprecedented number of invitations our faculty have received to speak at prominent institutions around the world.  Over roughly the past year, KSU political science faculty members have given talks at Princeton University, Stanford University, Rice University, USC, Rutgers University, UNLV, North Carolina State University, the University of Houston, the University of California-Davis, the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and the University of Oklahoma.  Upcoming talks include seminars at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, the Berlin Center for Cold War Studies, and the American University in Beirut.

To say that our faculty are highly regarded in their fields is an understatement!


Linford-Patrick Political Science Professorship Established in Department

Diane Patrick meeting with Dean Chakrabarti during her recent visit to campus

Diane Patrick (1970) has established an endowed professorship in Political Science through a deferred gift to honor her late husband, Bob Patrick (1969, 1970, History), and former political science professor, Orma Linford.  Dr. Linford was a central member of the department for decades and is credited with building the pre-law program at KSU.  A staunch defender of civil liberties, Dr. Linford was known for her humanitarianism. Bob Patrick went on from KSU to have a distinguished career in environmental law at the Environmental Protection Agency where he served as Senior Attorney and Regional Judicial Officer. Continue reading “Linford-Patrick Political Science Professorship Established in Department”

Sally Coberly Political Science Scholarship

Sally Coberly

Sally Coberly (1970) has also made a commitment to future K-Staters by establishing an endowed scholarship in the department for students who are academically driven, exhibit financial need, and have an interest in public policy.  Sally recently retired as the Deputy Director of the National Health Policy Forum in Washington, DC.  At the Forum and other organizations, Sally had a long, influential career providing non-partisan perspectives to members of Congress on issues related to health and aging.  The new student scholarship established in her name will help to spark interest in public policy issues among eager K-Staters for generations to come.

We are extremely grateful to Sally for her commitment to KSU and to political science students.

Kissingers’s Support Students in Security Studies

Jeff Pickering with Carol and Don Kissinger

Don (1967) and Carol (1967) Kissinger have provided generous annual support to the department’s Security Studies graduate program over many years.  Don and Carol both studied political science at K-State, where they developed a life-long passion for international affairs and learning.  Don went on to an esteemed career as an intelligence officer in the US Air Force, rising to the rank of Lt. Colonel.  After his time in the military, Don became an executive at Northrup Grumman.

The Kissinger’s support has been extremely valuable for Security Studies students.  Last year, the department was able to increase Security Studies graduate student stipends thanks to the Kissinger’s generosity.  Continue reading “Kissingers’s Support Students in Security Studies”

K-State Ranked #1 Political Science Graduate Program in 2016

Kansas State University’s Political Science graduate program was ranked the #1 program in the nation in 2016 by graduateprograms.com.  The data used for the ranking comes directly from surveys of current students and recent graduates.  K-State earned an overall score of 4.85 out of 5 and exemplary scores in campus safety, career advising, instruction quality, and networking opportunities.

The ranking also highlights that our program is an outstanding value.  Graduateprograms.com notes that while “prestigious schools like Yale University and the University of Chicago stand out for reputation, for more budget-conscious students, colleges like Florida Atlantic University and Kansas State University should stand out, both of which average out-of-state annual tuition costs of less than $20,000 and less than $10,000 for state residents.”

Our faculty’s dedication to graduate student education continues to earn well deserved plaudits!

Political Science Faculty Publish a Remarkable 20 Articles in “Top 30” Journals Last Year

K-State political science faculty members had a remarkably productive year when it comes to cutting-edge scholarship in leading disciplinary outlets.  Department faculty members had 9 articles published or accepted in journals ranked in the top ten in the field over the past year.  They had an additional 11 articles published or accepted in journals ranked in the top 30.  Our faculty had publications appear in outlets such as the British Journal of Political Science, Review of Politics, Political Research Quarterly, Social Science Quarterly, Public Performance and Management Review, International Studies Quarterly, Public Administration Quarterly, History of Political Thought, Journal of Conflict Resolution and International Interactions.  It is no wonder K-State political science faculty have received such acclaim for their scholarship. Our research is expanding the boundaries of knowledge in the most visible outlets in the profession! As important, our faculty bring excitement about such new knowledge into the classroom each and every day.

A list of our journal publications over the past year is available here:  http://www.k-state.edu/polsci/.

Political Science Major Enjoys Life Changing Experience Studying in Italy

Grant Topjon in Italy

Grant Topjon, double major in Political Science and Philosophy, had an eye-opening experience as an exchange student at John Cabot University in Rome, Italy last semester.  He especially enjoyed a course he took on Italian Politics and Society, which allowed him to compare Italian and American political life.  The experience convinced Grant of the value of studying abroad.  He states, “My experience abroad has changed me in ways I could have never imagined. I have seen so many different parts of the world and so many different cultures. I’ve been given various opportunities to pursue my goals and follow my dreams in and out of the classroom and because of these experiences; I will never see the world in the same way again.” Continue reading “Political Science Major Enjoys Life Changing Experience Studying in Italy”

Support K-State Political Science

We appreciate the support of our alumni.  Political science majors have gone on to accomplish amazing things, and we are grateful when past graduates share their expertise and knowledge with the cadre of students currently in the department.  We also, of course, greatly appreciate the financial support provided by alumni.  Contributions provide a wealth of opportunities for both students and faculty!

If you are interested in contributing to the department, please contact Shelley Carver, our Foundation representative, at shelleyc@found.ksu.edu or 800-432-1578 (toll free).  You can also follow this link to offer support: http://www.k-state.edu/polsci/scholarships/.