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Department of Political Science

Partnering with the Department of Nuclear Engineering and the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy, the Department of Political Science has trans­formed their Masters in Public Administration pro­gram into a Masters in Public Policy and Adminis­tration degree, with the option to tailor the curriculum into a global security studies track.

The MPPA is a professional degree program designed to prepare men and women to assume responsible positions in the public service and the not-for-profit sector through a program of study that integrates the theory and practice of public administration and public policy analysis. The pro­gram aspires to produce graduates who are literate in the field of public administration, have the skills to be effective managers of organizational resourc­es, and possess the analytical abilities to be creative problem solvers.

The MPPA degree is a 30 credit hour program, and to fulfill the requirements of the global security track, students are required to ful­fill 9 credit hours in global security studies. The MPPA program began in the fall semester of 2012.

Prior to the development of the MPPA pro­gram, however, the Department of Political Science, the Baker Center, and the Institute for Nuclear Security collaborated to develop a special seminar as a centerpiece course in the political science global security related curriculum. This course, co-taught by Brandon Prins and Ambassador Thomas Gra­ham, focuses on the strategies, contexts, and tactics associated with development of complex interna­tional treaties. The class concludes with an extend­ed mock international convention on establishing a Middle East Nuclear Weapons Free Zone, with class participants representing various nation-states in the region. The description of that course follows:

POLS 410 Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Treaty Negotiation
The Trinity test of an atomic bomb at Alamogordo, New Mexico, in 1945 signaled simultaneously mankind’s hope for unlimited power to drive civilization into the future, but also the fear of unleashing a weapon that could extinguish in a few minutes time all the efforts of human society. To­day, such destructive power in the hands of terrorists and rogue states concerns leaders and scientists world wide. This course is fundamentally about such weapons. Stu­dents are exposed to many critical issues in nuclear se­curity, including US and global efforts to control nuclear weapons and technology and the international regimes intended to arrest proliferation.