On April 13, 2016, Dr. Walter Wright received an award recognizing his role as one of the founders of the Central Texas Dispute Resolution Center (CTDRC), a nonprofit corporation that provides low-cost mediation services for the residents of Hays, Comal, Guadalupe and Caldwell Counties. On the same day, the CTDRC honored its two other founders: Anna Bartkowski, a 2007 graduate of the master's degree program in Legal Studies and one of Dr. Wright's former students, and Walt Krudop, a mediator and community leader who lives in Dripping Springs.
On Monday evening, April 18, 2016 the Texas State University International City Management Association (ICMA) MPA Student Chapter met at the City of San Marcos Activity Center. About 50 MPA students, faculty and public administrators from the Region 7 Texas City Management Association (TCMA) were in attendance. The featured speaker for the evening was Mr. Jerrod Miller, City Manager of San Marcos, Texas. Mr. Miller provided an overview of what local governments need to do to prepare for natural disasters. His discussion focused on lessons learned from recent flooding which occurred in San Marcos and surrounding cities in Central Texas. Ms. Stephanie Reyes, City of San Marcos Assistant Director of Human Resources a member of ICMA provided the audience with valuable information about the benefits of ICMA membership. For additional information about the Texas State University ICMA MPA Student Chapter please contact MPA student representatives Jesse Ancira or email@example.com or Dr. Emily Hanks Emily.firstname.lastname@example.org, the chapter’s faculty advisor.
On Monday, April 11ths, the department’s visiting scholar, Choong hee Park, spoke to an Inklings gathering on Trends in South Korean TV Journalism: Domestic Elections and Politics. His presentation explored the changing world of political coverage in South Korean TV journalism. His presentation included video clips illustrating the high level of technological sophistication achieved by South Korean TV journalists, a sophistication often surpassing that of American TV journalism. Mr. Park’s talk included video clips of his own work as a journalist and commentator on South Korean television. These clips demonstrated his creative use of the latest technology to provide his viewers breaking electoral news and analysis.
Judge David Gaultney, formerly of the Texas Ninth Appeals Court, visited with Political Science and Legal Studies students on Tuesday, March 29. He is a graduate of the Texas State University Department of Political Science. Judge Gaultney spoke in a Constitutional Law class with a group of Legal Studies graduate students in the Moot Court Room, discussing the law, law school, and the American judiciary. Judge Gaultney was hosted at a luncheon in the Dean’s Conference Room with a group of two dozen students exploring the possibility of attending law school.
Dr. Al Brophy of the University of North Carolina participated in the most recent Discourse in Democracy event. He spoke on "Reading the Great Constitutional Dream Book" which traced the origins of the idea of equality in the Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education to its roots among African American intellectuals. Those long-ignored people, like W.E.B. DuBois and many others now forgotten, argued for a doctrine of equal treatment and campaigned for it in the pages of African American newspapers, periodicals, books, and ultimately the courts. The lecture showed how humble people, at the margin of US society, changed culture, politics, and law.
He conducted two afternoon seminars for small groups of undergraduate and graduate students and that evening delivered a lecture on the topic in Alkek Teaching Theater. Attended by some 200 students, faculty and members of the community, it was another successful Discourse in Democracy event.
On March 7, Dr. Don Inbody spoke about his recent book, The Soldier Vote: War, Politics, and the Ballot in America (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2016). The book tells the story of how American military personnel gradually got the right to vote in elections while deployed or stationed away from their home states, and the practical difficulties that they experience in attempting to exercise this right. A discussion followed with the faculty and graduate students in attendance.
On February 18th, the Political Science Film Series sponsored a showing of Frank Capra’s classic, State of the Union which explored the caucus and primary season of the 1848 presidential campaign the pre-caucus and primary season of the 1948 presidential election. In the fall, the series sponsored a showing of John Sayles’ iconic Texas film, Lone Star (1996). The showing of Lone Star was part of Texas State's Common Experience programming for the 2015-2016 school year whose theme was "Bridged Through Stories: Shared Heritage of the United States and Mexico."
With the 2016 election year underway, on February 16th, Mr. Matt Boehmer, Director of the Federal Voting Assistance Program, came to campus to give a talk and hold a series of seminars on absentee voting. In particular, he focused on the unique difficulties that American military personnel and citizens living overseas have in voting in elections. His remarks were followed by a vigorous discussion about what is happening and what can be done to make absentee voting easier and more accessible.