Department Events

Career fairs, guest speakers, interest meetings, and more!

Fall 2022

   Guest Lecture with Dr. Amitav Acharya

Amitav Acharya is Distinguished Professor of International Relations at American University, Washington, D.C., where he holds the UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance at the School of International Service, and serves as the chair of the ASEAN Studies Initiative. Acharya, a prolific scholar, has made contributions to a wide range of topics in International Relations, including constructivism, ASEAN and Asian regionalism, and Global International Relations.

Friday, November 11th, 4:00-5:00 PM: Monroe 346



Global Gag Rule & Reproductive Rights Guest Lecture

Join guest speaker Rebecca Dennis, Associate Director of U.S. Policy and Advocacy at PAI for a talk about the Global Gag Rule and the advocacy work of the PAI, an advocacy group focused on accessible, quality health care and the sexual and reproductive rights of women and girls.

October 31st, 11:00 AM: Monroe 110





Guest Lecture on Free Speech

Join guest speaker Gabe Walters, an attorney with FIRE (the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression) and 2003 UMW Alum, for a discussion of current cases where students’ free speech is under threat and cases where politicians attempt to curb faculty members’ academic freedom.

Tuesday, October 18th, 3:00 Pm: Monroe 211




Elections Guest Lecture

In 2000, President George Bush’s name was listed first on every ballot in Florida, and he won that State and the Presidency by the narrowest of margins. In 2016, Donald Trump had a similar experience. Have the outcomes of many recent elections been influenced by the order of candidates’ names on ballots? This talk proposes a theory of why and when such effects might occur and reviews the body of studies that have explored this issue in the U.S. and a dozen other countries. Spotlighted in this talk will be reanalysis of older data and analysis of newly collected data to shed light on the conditions under which name order effects occur, their magnitude, whether different research methods lead to different conclusions, and whether the States should reform their ballot design practices.

September 12th, 12:00 PM: Monroe 346

Monroe Hall Block Party Event

Join us for snacks, conversation and fun with faculty and students.

Hosted by: AMST, Anth, Econ, Geo, Hist, IA, PoliSci, Psych, Soc/Anthro, and WGST departments.

September 22nd, 4-6 PM: Palmieri Plaza





Spring 2022

Talk with Dr. Erin Accampo Hern

Dr. Hern is an Assistant Professor in the Political Science Department at Syracuse University. Her research examines political behavior in Africa. She will share her insights from her book ‘Developing States, Shaping Citizenship.’ Please come join us!

Friday, April 8th, 4pm- 5pm, on Zoom:

This guest speaker is sponsored by the Department of Political Science and International Affairs at the University of Mary Washington. If you have any questions about this guest lecture, please contact Professor Martinez at

Looking Back, Looking Ahead: Virginia’s 2021 Elections & the 2022 Congressional midterms Panel Discussion and Q&A

Rosalyn Cooperman, UMW Professor of Political Science, Department Chair

Stephen Farnsworth, UMW Professor of Political Science, Director, UMW Center for Leadership and Media Studies

Time: April 5, 2022 06:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Meeting ID: 891 5304 4592

This panel is sponsored by the Department of Political Science and International Affairs at the University of Mary Washington and is a special program for Mary Wash Giving Day. If you have any questions about this panel, please contact Professor Cooperman at

Alumni Career/Graduate School Panel

On Thursday, March 31, 2022 at 5 PM in Monroe, Room 346.

Featuring the experience and advice of the following alumni:
Neil Burke (’13), Masters of Public Administration, Virginia Tech Management and Program Analyst, Internal Revenue Service
Shirley Martey Hargis (’14), Consultant on China, CRDF Global’s Data and Technology Program, Executive Director of Black Professionals in International Affairs
Rachel McVicker (’21), Research Assistant for the Center of Naval Analysis, China and Indo-Pacific, Security Affairs Division
Andrea Shaia (’16), Associate at Freedman, Framme, and Thrush Law Firm Richmond, Virginia
Andrew Sharpe (’19), Graduate Student in University of Virginia Masters of Public Policy Program Finalist, Presidential Management Fellow

Contact Professor Lester at or ext. 1146 for details or questions!

The War in Ukraine: Panel Discussion and Q&A

Join us on Wednesday, March 9, 4pm-5:30pm on Zoom to learn more about the conflict in the Ukraine.
Contact Professor Davidson if you have any questions!

Update in International Affairs!

The PS and IA department has successfully completed a revision of the International Affairs major requirements. Please see the website for updates.

Fall 2021

UMW PSIA Hosts 88th District Debate

Democrat Kecia Evans, Republican Phillip Scott and Libertarian Tim Lewis will face off live via Zoom, with public viewing accessible through YouTube. Incumbent Mark Cole (R) announced earlier this year that he would not seek reelection after nearly two decades in office. The 88th district covers part of Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania, Stafford and Fauquier counties.

“While COVID has forced us to debate online this fall, we can look forward to vigorous discussions about the path forward for Virginia,” said moderator Stephen Farnsworth, UMW professor of political science and director of the University’s Center for Leadership and Media Studies. Click here to learn more!



Zoom Option: OCT 19, 2021 05:00PM, HTTPS://UMW-SSO.ZOOM.US/J/84910411480?PWD=ZG5WAEFAUHO3V01JAXJRZW85YZC2UT09
In Person Option: OCTOBER 20, 2021, 5:00PM, MONROE 346

Meet PS/IA faculty and majors to learn more about the department, major programs, internship, research, and study abroad opportunities.
Questions? Contact Professor Cooperman,

Gender, Nation-building, and Politics in Afghanistan: the Last Two Decades

After the fall of the Taliban in 2001, political stakeholders in Afghanistan went to work to write a constitution and lay the foundation of a new, democratic political system. A significant focus of this nation-building effort was to provide representation and rights to women. Our speakers will discuss these processes, the outcomes of these efforts and the likely future prospects for women and politics in Afghanistan after the Taliban’s return. Click here to watch the event on YouTube!

When: Oct 19, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern

Where: Zoom
Click here to learn more about the event!

A Roundtable on the Implication of the US Withdrawal from Afghanistan

At the end of August 2021, US forces withdrew from Afghanistan ending a twenty-year presence in that country. Scholars and analysts have praised and criticized the move in equal measure. As we try to make sense of the events, a host of questions emerge: Why did the US withdraw from Afghanistan? Is this a good policy decision for the US? What does the decision mean for Afghanistan? What does it mean for the countries in its neighborhood? What impact will the withdrawal likely have on the Biden administration? The speakers on the panel will address these and other related questions.

When: 4-5:30 pm on Thursday, September 23 2021

Where: On Zoom.

Click here to watch the recording of the event!

Click here to learn more about the event!

Spring 2021

2021 Career Panel

Wednesday, March 24 at 7 PM: 2021 Political Science and International Affairs Careers and Graduate School Panel Discussion! Featuring the experience and advice of alumni:

    • Caitriona Cobb (’17) John Hopkins SAIS, Middle East Studies Program (’19) Africa Content Manager, Tesla Government Inc.
    • John Cronin (’19) Office of the Governor, Virginia Management Fellow
    • Kate Miceli (’13) State Affairs Counsel, American Association for Justice
    • Edward Scheirer (‘16) Law Clerk for the Honorable Kathleen Beckstead at the Circuit Court for Wicomico County. Associate, Cockey, Brennan, & Maloney
    • Michael Ware (’12) Intelligence Operations Specialist, US Department of Homeland Security – Office of Intelligence & Analysis.


Passcode: O?7PWK1a

Contact Prof. Emile Lester for details: or ext.

“94 Paradoxes to Consider in the 21% Century” Book Event


On Wednesday February 10, 2021 at 4pm, the UMW PSIA department will be hosting a virtual book event with author Leopoldo Martinez Nucete. Click the image to view larger and learn more! Zoom link will be posted soon.

Fall 2020

Understanding The Election with Professor Farnsworth

Tomorrow (Thursday, November 5th) at 6pm Professor Farnsworth will be covering the 2020 election and explaining the occurrence of events. Join him by using one of these two links: or via YouTube:

Presidential Leadership – With Good Reason

On October 31st, With Good Reason podcast radio will be doing a segment on Presidential Leadership in the United States. Click here to tune in!


Wednesday October 28th at 7pm a panel of guest speakers and UMW professors will discuss the historic role of religion in American Politics and its unique position in this years election. RSVP for this event by clicking here. Click the flyer image for the full sized PDF with full information!

None of the Above:

On Wednesday October 28th at 6pm, a panel will discuss how to address common excuses for not voting and how to convince your friends and family to vote on election day. Tune in on Facebook live by clicking here!

Professor Larus on The Importance of Taiwan

Professor Larus will be on On Liberty podcast out of Sydney, Australia today at 7pm discussing “Why the world needs a free Taiwan”. All are welcome to watch and call in. Tune in by clicking here.

The U.S. Census and the 2020 Elections

On Tuesday 13 October 2020 at 12:30pm ET, Stacy Whitehouse will discuss the US Census, the 2020 elections, and her work involving with both. To attend, click here or on the image for the flyer and zoom link! Reach out to Professor Cooperman if you have any questions.

Click here for a recording of the talk!! passcode: J&G.u^2e

Beyond the Classroom: An Endowment for Student Research and Learning

The Dean of the college of Arts and Sciences announces a new endowment for student research.
click here to learn more.

Student Political Theory Discussion

UMW Students are welcomed to join UVA students in their discussion of political theory on Sunday, October 4th at 5 PM Eastern Time. The discussion will be about Immanuel Kant and Benjamin Constant’s political writings. Come prepared to discuss these three readings:

Zoom Link:

If you have any questions, reach out to Professor Larus or the student coordinator from UVA, Kaiwen.

VA First District Debate

The Virginia First District Congressional Debate [online] will be at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 21. at Mary Washington. Click here for more details here.

Spring 2020

Due to COVID-19, March-May 2020 events were cancelled. In replacement, alumni sent in career information and our website displays all the great things about our students, professors, and department as a whole! Check out our student news, alumni news, faculty news, departmental honors, and all the pages on this website!

Professor Cooperman and Professor Farnsworth: COVID in Context

As part of UMW’s Covid in Context course, Professor Cooperman and Professor Farnsworth recently delivered a lecture titled “Covid and the 2020 U.S. Presidential and Congressional Elections” – click here to watch.

Students Present at National Conferences

February 2020 – Six UMW Political Science and International Affairs major students (Jeremy Engel, Zachary Handlin, Rebecca Jacobi, Kyle Lehmann, Tom Lengel, and Lauren Perez) presented their research at the Feb. 15 Pi Sigma Alpha National Student Research Conference in Washington, D.C. Read more about it here.

Spring 2020 – Student Sarah Pietrowski (PSCI 2020) will present research she conducted for Dr. Singh’s recent “Politics of the Middle East and North Africa” course at this year’s annual meeting of the Middle East Studies Association. Her paper, which examines Syrian refugees’  influence on German policy, was accepted earlier this year for presentation at the conference of the Virginia Social Sciences Association.

Fall 2019

Gender in Afghan Culture and Refugee Resettlement

Speakers: Ms. Kristen Larcher and Ms. Nasira Talib Catholic Charities, Fredericksburg

Wednesday, November 13 Monroe 212 12:00-12:50 pm

Catholic Charities helps immigrants and refugees in Fredericksburg by providing services such as legal immigration consultation and representation, English-language instruction, adult education programs, workforce development training, naturalization assistance, bilingual community education, and refugee resettlement and assistance services. In this lecture, Ms. Larcher and Ms. Talib will share their insights on the intersection of culture and gender in the context of refugee relocation.

Virginia House of Delegates Speaker at UMW

Speaker: Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Kirk Cox (R, Chesterfield)

Monday, November 11, 2019

“Reviewing the October 2019 Canadian Elections”

Dr.  Jeffrey Ayres, St. Michael’s College

Thursday, October 24 

9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. 

Monroe 116

PS/IA Major Interest Meeting

Interested in majoring in Political Science and/or International Affairs?

Thursday, October 24th 5 p.m. 

Lee 411

Blind Spot?

Khaled Elgindy discusses his new book, Blind Spot: America and the Palestinians from Balfour to Trump, on the US role in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. A key adviser to Palestinian peace negotiators from 2004-09, he’s now a senior fellow in the Brookings Institution’s Center for Middle East Policy. Open to the public.  

Wednesday, October 23rd 4:00-5:30 p.m.

Lee Hall 411

The Idea of International Justice: Policy and Practice

Arthur Traldi, Team Leader on the Prosecution of Ratko Mladic before the International Criminal Tribunal

Tuesday, October 22nd 4 p.m.

Monroe Hall, Room 116

Regulation, Corporate Social Responsibility, and Conflict Minerals

Dr. Virginia Haufler, associate professor in the Department of Government and Politics at the University of Maryland

5 p.m. on Thursday, October 3rd

Monroe 346

Dr. Virginia Haufler is Associate Professor in the Department of Government and Politics at the University of Maryland, College Park and is affiliated with the Center for International Development and Conflict Management. Her research focuses on the changing nature of governance in the global political economy, especially the role of transnational corporations and corporate social responsibility. Her current research examines how transnational regulation of the private sector addresses issues of conflict and corruption. She has published extensively on this topic. She has a M.A./Ph.D from Cornell University and dual B.A. from Pennsylvania State University.

Why Are Poor People Poor? A Conversation About the Demographics of Poverty and Why It Got That Way

Ann H. Kloeckner, Esq. Executive Director, Legal Aid Works®

Monday, September 30 Monroe 210 12:00-12:50 pm

Ann Kloeckner joined Legal Aid Works® in 2011 to take the helm. Ann hails originally from Vermont and is most recently from Texas, with a non-linear career path emphasizing public service and advocacy on behalf of survivors of domestic violence. Ann has law licenses in four states (PA, NJ, TX, and VA) and is a graduate of Swarthmore College and Villanova University School of Law, where her stint at a legal aid clinical program nurtured her passion for equal justice and her tolerance of a nonprofit lifestyle. She enjoys mentoring new attorneys and maintains a robust schedule of public speaking engagements throughout the seventeen-county service area. Ann was appointed in 2016 by the Virginia Supreme Court to a three-year term as a member of the faculty of the Harry L. Carrico Professionalism Course, which is mandatory for every newly licensed attorney in Virginia.

28th District House of Delegates Debate

Wednesday, September 18, 7 p.m.

Lee Hall, Room 411

Joshua Cole, Democrat

Paul Milde, Republican