MONROE, La. — For only the third time in the past forty years, the Louisiana Political Science Association (LPSA) held its annual conference at the University of Louisiana Monroe on February 19-20, 2016.
Faculty and students in ULM’s Political Science department, as well as students in the new Masters in Public Administration (MPA) program, presented papers and led discussions related to their research.
MPA graduate student Ashley Lawrence of Warren, Arkansas presented her paper, “It Takes a Village: Community Sustainability and the Effects of Hidden Rules.” Lawrence commented, “I have been working on this paper for the past three years and the comments from other students and especially professors has been very encouraging.”
Political Science major Joshua Dean of Lafayette presented his paper, “Potential Climate Change in Developing Countries.” Dean said, “This paper was the result of a group project in Dr. Sutherlin’s Foreign Policy class. He thought we did enough research and had enough content to present our findings at the conference.”
Political Science associate professor Josh Stockley led a round table discussion on Louisiana politics, budgets and elections. “In an election year like we just had and a budget session like we are having, the hard part was limiting our discussion to an hour and a half. This is what makes my job so much fun,” remarked Dr. Stockley.
Fellow Political Scientist professor John W. Sutherlin discussed Iran, China and Russia in an international panel. Dr. Sutherlin remarked, “I am not sure that I added any clarity to these issues, but the discussion with other political scientists was enlightening.”
Sterlington Mayor Vern Breland was the featured speaker for the event. Breland discussed how Sterlington has managed so much growth. "The Mayor’s determination for community success is an inspiration,” stated Lawrence. “It is encouraging for students to hear local leaders discussing the triumphs of communities in the state."
Dr. Sutherlin, who was the Vice-President of the LPSA, was elected President. The next LPSA conference will be held next year at Northwestern State University.