Spring 2009

Issue 2: Spring 2009 Alumni Newsletter

Faculty Focus:

Dr. Calvin Mouw, Political Science – Fulbright Grant Recipient

Dr. Mouw spent the Spring, 2009 semester at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia researching and lecturing. Read more.

Dr. Matthew HoldenDr. Matthew Holden has been named the first Wepner Distinguished Professor in Political Science at UIS. Dr. Holden will also serve as speaker at the 38th Commencement Ceremony on May 16, 2009. Learn more about Dr. Holden and the Wepner Professorship here.

Save a Tree!

Students in Action:

Political Studies MA Student David Piccioli traveled to Boston with Political Science Faculty Dr. Tim Miller to participate in a Northeast Political Science Association panel on Presidential and Executive Politics: America and the Middle East . At the panel, Piccioli presented his research paper “Groupthink and Iraq: Does the Janis Model Explain Bush Policy ‘Fiasco’?” This paper was written for Dr. Miller’s American government course. Piccioli is employed by the Illinois Federation of Teachers as a lobbyist and advocate for education funding at the Illinois State Capital in Springfield

At the encouragement of her advisor Dr. Richard Gilman-Opalsky, Political Science Master’s student Ashley Benedict ’09, attended two conferences this year. Her paper “Richard Falk: Savior of Globalization” was selected to be presented at the International Studies Association Midwest Conference held in St. Louis, MO. Benedict also gave a poster session on the same topic at the Southern Political Science Association in New Orleans, LA.

The College of Public Affairs uses gift money to support student travel. If you would like to contribute to the Student Travel Fund, please visit this link.

Commencement Honors:

CPAA was heavily featured at the 2009 Commencement Ceremony. The commencement address was delivered by Dr. Matthew Holden Jr., UIS’ first Wepner Distinguished Professor in Political Science. Masters of Public Administration Graduate Paul Gesterling ’09 was the Student Speaker, and Thom Serafin, Master of Public Affairs Reporting ’74, served as Alumni Speaker. Click here to read more about these three distinguished representatives of the College of Public Affairs and Admistration.

Program Marshals

Each year, the faculty and students from each academic program choose a graduating student to serve as program marshal. These students, who best exemplify the goals and spirit of their programs, are identifiable at the ceremony by the gold stoles they wear. View the list of our 2009 Program Marshals.

Online Grad from Alaska Returns for Commencement

Legal Studies graduate Joy McCulloch moved to Anchorage, Alaska in 2002 leaving her master’s degree program incomplete. When the Legal Studies department began offering an online degree in 2007, she was able to finish her coursework. McCulloch returned to Springfield for Commencement and the annual Online Brunch. This widely attended event for online graduates is often the first time students step foot on the UIS campus. Watch a video of highlights from the bunch and an interview with Joy McCulloch here.

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tED rALLIn February, nationally syndicated columnist and political cartoonist Ted Rall exhibited samples of his work Search and Destroy in the UIS Visual Arts Gallery. Learn more about the Political Humor series here.

Alumni Awards:

Congratulations to two CPAA for their prestigious achievements:

Acting Inspector General Gordon S. HeddellLegal studies MA ’75 Alumnus Acting Inspector General Gordon S. Heddell was selected to receive the University of Illinois Alumni Association’s highest honor, the Alumni Achievement Award.

Robert MooreCriminal Justice BA ’80 and Public Administration MPA ’85 Alumnus, Retired U.S. Marshal Robert Moore, is only the fourth alumnus from the Springfield Campus to receive the University of Illinois Alumni Humanitarian Award.

Under the Dome – UIS Day at the Capital

Brent NeverOn May 13, 30 students from Illinois High Schools spent a day at the Statehouse on a busy day during the peak of the legislative session. This exciting event featured question and answer sessions from many UIS representatives including CPAA faculty members Brent Never (Public Administration), Charles Wheeler (Public Affairs Reporting), Kent Redfield and Chris Mooney (Political Science); alumni Sara Wojcicki and Mike Ragen; and WUIS Statehouse Reporter Amanda Vinicky. The students also got a chance to speak with Minority Leader Tom Cross and Representative Rich Brauer who brought the students out onto the house floor. Click here to read more about the Day Under the Dome and watch a video.


Each year, the College of Public Affairs and Administration awards scholarships to deserving students in every department.