Department of Political Science
The study of politics – an ancient discipline – emerged alongside our earliest societies and governments. Today, its scholars collect data and make scientific observations to describe, explain and predict the political phenomena that are so central to questions of leadership and governance.
Our goal is to provide a rigorous political science education, with a strong basis in liberal arts and technology, that enables students to better understand today’s political world and how political forces may be harnessed to improve communities, our nation and the world.
Professor Frederick currently serves as the Chair of the BSU Political Science Department. He specializes in the field of American politics. He teaches classes in campaigns and elections, public opinion, political parties and interest groups, political psychology, women and politics, undergraduate research methods and data analysis for public administration. His research focuses on the U.S. Congress, gender in politics and campaigns and elections. He is author of the book Congressional Representation and Constituents: The Case for Increasing the House of Representatives. He is currently writing a book with coauthors Laurel Elder and Barbara Burrell examining public opinion toward the spouses of Presidential Candidates under contract with Palgrave Macmillan. His research has appeared in Political Research Quarterly, Public Opinion Quarterly, Political Behavior, American Politics Research, Social Science Quarterly, State Politics and Policy Quarterly, PS: Political Science and Politics, Presidential Studies Quarterly, Congress and the Presidency, Politics Groups and Identities, Women, Politics and Policy, Judicature, Justice System Journal, Politics and Policy, American Review of Politics, Social Science Journal and numerous edited volumes. Professor Frederick also serves as a Research Fellow with the BSU Center for Democratic Governance and Leadership.
BS, MacMurray College
MA, University of Illinois at Springfield
PhD, Northern Illinois University
Winner of the 2014 Presidential Award for Distinguished Teaching, Jordon Barkalow is an Associate Professor of Political Science specializing in political theory. He also serves of a co-coordinator of the minor in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE). Professor Barkalow teaches courses in American Government, Political Theory (Western Political Thought and American Political Thought), as well as International Politics and Legal Studies (Democratic Theory and Democratization and International Law). He is also very active in the area of undergraduate research having supervised nine ATP Summer Grants and Honors Theses as well as numerous ATP Semester Grants.
Professor Barkalow’s research focuses on American political thought with a special emphasis on the meaning of American citizenship and national identity. Here, he is working on a book manuscript where he argues that American citizenship is properly understood in commercial terms rather than civic or religious terms. Professor Barkalow has published on the emergence of individualism in American political thought and its institutional implications as well as on the thought of Ralph Waldo Emerson, John C. Calhoun, John Adams, and Isiah Berlin. In addition to his work in American political thought, Professor Barkalow has research interests in politics and literature, early modern political thought, and constitutionalism.
BA, Pacific University
MA, PhD, University of Houston
Dr. Kevin Donnelly is an Associate Professor of Political Science and Public Administration, and Coordinator of the Master of Public Administration Program. Dr. Donnelly is also the 2015 recipient of the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching. He teaches courses in American Government, state and local government, and public policy. His research interests are in the areas of language in politics, and health and social welfare policy. Dr. Donnelly co-authored a book titled Foreign Remedies: What the Experience of Other Nations Can Tell Us about Next Steps in Reforming U.S. Health Care with David Rochefort. He has also published in Polity, the Journal of Policy History, Harvard Health Policy Review, and Medicine and Health Rhode Island, authored a number of book chapters, and frequently presents his work at professional conferences. Dr. Donnelly's current research focuses on the language of political actors involved in advancing policy ideas and interests.
BS, Providence College
MA, University of Rhode Island
PhD, Northeastern University
Dr. Kemper teaches courses on American Politics, Administrative Law, Constitutional Law, Legal Theory and Process, Model United States Senate, and Mock Trial and Moot Court. He serves as a pre-law advisor for Bridgewater State University and as the faculty advisor to the BSU Pre-Law Club. In 2004 Professor Kemper was recognized as the University's Advisor of the Year. In addition, Dr. Kemper is the Assistant Director of the Center for Legislative Studies and co-hosts the Center's monthly cable television public affairs show, Commonwealth Politics. Professor Kemper's current research agenda focuses on the selection of state and federal judges, affirmative action policies in higher education admissions, the impact of courts on bureaucracies, and the historical evolution of free speech doctrine in the United States. Dr. Kemper has presented numerous papers at professional conferences, published an article in The Journal of Politics, and authored several book chapters and encyclopedia entries.
BA, Northern Illinois University
MA, PhD, Ohio State University
Inkyoung Kim joined the Political Science Department as an assistant professor in August 2016. She received her Ph.D. in Political Science at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Before coming to BSU, she taught at Clark University and Reed College. She is teaching POLI 275 Comparative Government, POLI 488 Politics in the Developing World, and POLI 475 Global Environmental Politics in fall 2016. Her research interests include regional environmental cooperation, transboundary pollution, regionalism, government and politics in East Asia, and sustainable consumption patterns. She is a contributor to journals such as International Relations of the Asia-Pacific and International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics. She loves playing tennis and the piano.
BA, SungKyunKwan University Seoul, South Korea
MA, Seoul National University Seoul, South Korea
PhD, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Dr. Deniz Zeynep Leuenberger is Bridgewater State University Chief of Staff and a Professor of Political Science/Public Administration. Professor Leuenberger specializes in sustainable development, public sector economics, public budgeting and finance, and non-profit and non-governmental organization management. In the past, she has held the following roles within the department and university: Coordinator of the MPA Program, Faculty Director of the Institute for Policy Analysis and Regional Engagement, Faculty Director of the Massachusetts Certified Public Managers Program, Faculty Director of the Institute for Regional Development, Coordinator for the Center for Sustainability, and Coordinator of the Center for Legislative Studies Global Citizen Leadership and Education program. She has served on the boards of ASPA's Association for Budgeting and Financial Management, the Section on Transportation Policy and Administration, and the Section for Women in Public Administration. She is the past chair of the Section on Transportation Policy and Administration. She has published articles on sustainable development, strategic planning, and caring labor in Administrative Theory and Praxis, Public Works and Management Policy, Water Policy, State and Local Government Review, PA Times, and in the Public Manager. She is the co-author, with John R. Bartle, of the book Sustainable Development in Public Administration.
BA, Midland College
MPA, PhD, University of Nebraska at Omaha
Professor Mozaffar teaches undergraduate courses in Comparative Politics and International Relations and graduate courses in the MPA program. His professional work combines academic research with policy application. His academic research focuses broadly on the application of institutional analysis to the comparative study of democratization, constitutional design, democratic governance, political parties, elections, electoral systems, electoral governance, ethnic politics, politics and religion, conflict management, African legislatures, and African politics.
A recipient of a National Science Foundation research grant, he is the author of numerous articles and book chapters on the colonial state in Africa, regime change, ethnic politics, democratization, political parties, electoral systems, the choice and consequences of new democratic institutions in Africa, and US democracy assistance policy. His work has appeared in the African Studies Review, American Political Science Review, Comparative Politics Studies, Democratization, Electoral Studies, International Negotiations, International Political Science Review, Journal of Legislative Studies, Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, Political Parties, and Representation (UK).
Professor Mozaffar is a co-Principal Investigator of the African Legislatures Project, a collaborative project between the BSU Center for Democratic Governance and Leadership and the Democracy in Africa Research Unit of the Center for Social Science Research at the University of Cape Town. He is a Research Fellow of the BSU Center for Democratic Governance and Leadership, and a Research Fellow of the Center for Social Science Research at the University of Cape Town. Professor Mozaffar was also a Fulbright Scholar in Nigeria.
In his public policy work, Professor Mozaffar has served as a consultant to the USAID Africa Bureau on institutional design and democratic governance. During the 1999-2000 academic year, he served as an American Association for the Advancement of Science Diplomacy Fellow at USAID, where he worked on democracy and human rights issues in Latin America. He was also a member of the US delegation to the Organization of American States election observation team for the legislative elections in Haiti in May 2000. He was a member of an international panel of experts on electoral systems established by the United Nations Electoral Assistance Division for the Fiji Constitutional Review Commission. In 2005, he served as a member of an international team of experts appointed by Elections Canada to assist the International Mission for Iraqi Elections in assessing the Transitional National Assembly Elections in January 2005, the Constitutional Referendum in October 2005, and the Iraqi Council of Representative Elections in December 2005, which he also monitored and observed in Baghdad. Professor Mozaffar is also an adjunct lecturer in the Naval Postgraduate School’s Regional Security Education Program in which capacity he travels on naval ships at sea to deliver country briefings and lectures on Islam, Africa and the Middle East to naval personnel on deployment.
BA, MA, Bowling Green State University
PhD, Miami University in Ohio
Dr. Na Sai specializes in the field of public management and public policy. She also conducts research in nonprofit management. Her current research is focused on human resource management and education policy. She has published in Review of Public Personnel Administration, Social Science Quarterly, and Educational Policy and has also presented a series of articles at professional conferences.
Dr. Na Sai is currently teaching POLI 521: Public Finance and POLI 501: Foundations of Public Administration for the MPA program. She is also teaching POLI 172: Introduction to American Government and POLI 390: Public Finance for undergraduate students.
BA, Peking University (China, People’s Republic of)
MA, Duke University
PhD, Georgia State University & Georgia Institute of Technology (Joint Program)
Professor Serra is the director of the Center for Legislative Studies and coordinator of the interdisciplinary civic education and community leadership minor. He served as department chair from 2004 to 2014. His teaching and research interests focus on legislative and electoral behavior, congressional representation of minority interests, presidency and executive politics, and policy implementation. Dr. Serra is a 2003-2004 American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow and has published articles in leading political science journals, including The Journal of Politics, Political Research Quarterly, American Politics Research, Legislative Studies Quarterly, Party Politics, The Journal of Legislative Studies, Congress and the Presidency, and Electoral Studies.
BA, MA, PhD, State University of New York, Stony Brook
Melinda Tarsi specialized in the field of American politics, with research interests in veterans’ benefits policies and politics; American political development; race and ethnicity in political behavior and representation; public opinion; and public administration. Dr. Tarsi is also a Research Fellow with the Center for Democratic Governance and Leadership, a Faculty Fellow with the Institute for Policy Analysis and Regional Engagement, and a Fellow with the Inter-University Seminar on Armed Forces and Society. Her work has appeared in the journals Journalism Practice; Armed Forces and Society; Politics, Groups, and Identities; and the Journal of Race, Ethnicity, and Politics. Her book project, which focuses on the politics of veterans' benefit policies in the twentieth century, has been supported by the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation's Harry Middleton Fellowship in Presidential Studies, the Roosevelt Institute, the Gerald R. Ford Foundation, and the Harry S. Truman Library Institute. Dr. Tarsi teaches courses on American politics at the undergraduate level, and graduate courses in the MPA program on organizational theory, organizational assessment, and the capstone seminar.
BA, Western Connecticut State University
MA, University of Massachusetts Amherst
PhD, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Larry Azer is a part-time Senior Instructor in the Political Science department and will be teaching a one-credit course on Public Budgeting (POLI 597) at Bridgewater State University's Cape Cod campus.
Larry is the Director of Finance and Operations for the Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School District since January 2011,where he is responsible for all aspects of financial management and ancillary services including budget development, capital planning, food services, student transportation, and facilities management. He is a member of the Massachusetts Association of School Business Officials (MASBO) and is a Massachusetts Certified Public Purchasing Officer (MCPPO).
While working towards his MPA degree at Bridgewater State University, Larry was actively involved with the Institute for Policy Analysis and Regional Engagement (IPARE), creating and presenting a module on public budgeting. He was also the 2013 winner of the Guy Clifford Scholarship for his scholastic achievement and commitment to public service. As a capstone assignment, Larry had his book review of "Trapped Under the Sea" by Neil Swidey published in The Public Manager in the winter of 2014.
Larry also served as an elected member of the Randolph School Committee from 2003 to 2012, including three years as the board's chair, as well as creating and chairing the budget sub-committee. He was a very active member of the Massachusetts Association of School Committees (MASC) and he led the school district's effort in passing a $5.5 million operational override of Proposition 2 1/2 in 2008, which is believed to be the largest such override in the history of Massachusetts.
BA, Tufts University
MPA, Bridgewater State University
Dr. Kalisz teaches Introduction to American Government in the Political Science department as a part-time instructor. Dr. Kalisz currently serves as Executive Director of the Parents Alliance for Catholic Education, responsible for the operation of a "grassroots" advocacy organization representing all Catholic schools in the state of Massachusetts. He has served as an adjunct at a number of institutions of higher education in New England. His expertise, experience and contributions come in the areas of leadership development, sustainable economic development, environmental education, public policy, American government operations, and entrepreneurship.
On January 5, 1998 Dr. Kalisz was administered the oath of office for the position of Mayor of the City of New Bedford which he held for eight years. The City of New Bedford is a "strong mayor" form of local government. As chief executive officer of the City he was responsible for daily operation of a nearly $226,000,000.00 budget, managing approximately 4000 employees, 18 square miles of land, the nation's largest dollar-value fishing port, and a population of approximately 100,000 residents.
During his term of office he was officially recognized by five cabinet-level federal agencies and by the Massachusetts Governor's office and Legislature. He was appointed by the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to serve on a federal advisory task force studying the future needs and impact of Superfund environmental legislation. Through his efforts New Bedford was selected as a Brownfield's Showcase community by the EPA and was later selected as one of only three Portfields Pilot Communities by NOAA/Commerce Department for advancement of environmental remediation and economic development potential as a deep-water port community.
BS, Southeastern Massachusetts University
MA, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
LPD, Northeastern University
Jodie Drapal Koretski’s main research interests include public and nonprofit organizations, citizen engagement, informal associations, and organizational behavior. She has presented her work at both national and international public and nonprofit sector conferences and has published research articles in Public Administration Review, and Administrative Theory & Practice. She has created articles for Public Manager, Bridgewater Review and PA Times and has been a reviewer for Public Administration Review, Policy and Politics, Oxford University Press, Nonprofit Voluntary Sector Quarterly, Voluntas, and Flat World Knowledge. She also served as the editorial assistant, copy writer, and network administrator for Administrative Theory & Praxis. Drapal Kluver has served over 25 years within the nonprofit sector in a variety of roles and with a myriad of organizations. Within her academic career, she has served as a core faculty member teaching courses in public and nonprofit management and is currently serving as the program director of the Massachusetts Certified Public Managers program at Bridgewater State University. Over the past several years she has been actively involved with service learning communities on campus, served on the National Service Learning Conference planning committee, and incorporates service learning/experiential learning within her classroom design. She has also been actively involved in the greater community as an educational consultant with a number of nonprofit and governmental organizations, as an instructor/presenter for nonprofit education programs, and as a director of development for a local arts and culture organization.
BS, University of Nebraska Lincoln/Omaha
MPA, ABD, University of Nebraska at Omaha
Paula Montgomery currently serves as the Campaign Manager for the Campaign to Re-Elect Jon Mitchell, Mayor of New Bedford. Paula is a part-time instructor for the Certified Public Manager Program teaching a one-credit course on Change Management. Paula received her MPA degree from Bridgewater State University in 2011.
Paula has spent 17 years in leadership and management roles with national non-profits. Prior to joining Mayor Mitchell's re-election campaign she was the Executive Director for the American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter. Paula also served as the Rhode Island Regional Director for Make-A-Wish MA and RI. Prior to that role, she served in a number of capacities with the American Cancer Society where her last position was State Vice President of Development.
Paula's undergraduate degrees from Emerson College and Bristol Community College are in Communications and Broadcast Journalism. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Rhode Island Chapter where she has served as co-chair of National Philanthropy Day in 2010, 2014, and 2015. Paula was nominated for a Cable Ace by the National Academy of Cable Program as a producer of a three part series titled Heroin: Back on the Streets in 1998.
AA, Bristol Community College
BS, Emerson College
MPA, Bridgewater State University
Dr. Sandra Popiden is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Norco College. Her research interests lie at the intersection of international relations and comparative politics, focusing on the causes and consequences of conflict. Her research interests include globalization, natural resource management and secessionism, civil war and terrorism, piracy, illicit trafficking, and other threats to international security. Dr. Popiden recently contributed two chapters on "Global Governance" and "Conflict and In/Security in the 21st Century" to the book Encounters with World Affairs (2015). She also recently published a book review on the internationalized civil war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo titled "Local Dimensions of War and Peace in the DRC," in the International Studies Review.
BA, Loyola Marymount University
MA, PhD, University of California, Santa Barbara
Katherine Saucier teaches courses in American Government. She specializes in the field of political psychology, and her primary interests include: prejudice, personality factors on political attitudes, threat appraisal, facial recognition bias, political bias in scientific research, and the psychological influences of humor on attention and decision-making. She has presented her findings at multiple conferences, including the Association for Psychological Sciences and the Eastern Psychological Association.
BS, Bridgewater State University
MA, Stony Brook University
Dr. Valla is currently employed full-time as an intelligence analyst specializing in international and domestic terrorism with FBI's Boston Field Office. He has served in that capacity for almost fourteen years. Additionally, he retired as a Major from the U.S. Army Reserve after a twenty year career as a military intelligence officer. His final assignment before retiring was teaching at the Joint Military Intelligence College, now the National Defense Intelligence College. There he taught graduate courses in national security studies, counterterrorism, and analytical methodology. At Bridgewater, Dr. Valla teaches Terrorism and National Security and The Government and Politics of Eastern Europe. Dr. Valla is a member of the International Studies Association and the International Association for Intelligence Education.
PhD, University of Connecticut
MA, University of Massachusetts Amherst
BA, Bridgewater State University
The department offers a BA in Political Science, with the option of choosing one of four areas of concentration. We also offer a minor in political science, an interdisciplinary minor in civic education and community leadership, and a graduate MPA program.
Our political science programs prepare students to be leaders in public, nonprofit and/or government positions. Students will also develop a strong background in history, economics, mathematics, literature, the arts and the sciences, and will be well-qualified to enter the fields of journalism, business, social welfare, teaching, law and information technology.
For more information on programs see our Catalog.