dept website

 The JSU Spring 2015 Graduate Commencement  was held  at the Lee E. Williams Atheletics and Assembley Center,  the JSU main campus, on May 1,  2015.  

One PhD  student and seven MPPA students  received their degrees  during the ceremony  from the Public Policy and Administration (PPAD) program ( People shown in pic: Professor  Billingsley, Ms. Tanya Reed, Ms. Daisy Carter and Ms.  Linda Barnette).  




The students who received their degrees are as follows:


Dr. Annie R. Baker


Mr. Jeremy D. Armstrong, Ms. Britiani D. Johnson, Ms. Linda W. Barnette, Ms. Daisy D. Carter, Ms. Tanya M. Reed, 

Mr. Clarence Byrd, III, and Mr. James C. Thompson.

Congratulations to all of the graduates!!!


  Distinguished Visiting Professor Sylvester Murray (in left picture) and six PPAD  students attended the National Forum for Black Public Administrators Conference,  held in Tampa, FL, from April 22 – 26, 2015. Their trip was a great success. Our  student panel was very well received. Kafond Wilder, Ashley Caples, Alonzo  Hutchins and Prisca Patrick  each gave a well prepared power point presentation  that Dr. Billingsley reviewed in advance. Michael Spann gave a poster presentation. The proof of being well received:  the audience engaged all of the students in extended question and answer sessions. Prisca Patrick received a $5,000 scholarship for an essay she wrote on health care. Antron McKay received a $2,500 scholarship for an essay he wrote on community involvement. And Mike Spann received a $1,000 scholarship for a poster he did on The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander. The PPAD  faculty members and students are very proud of all of them, and appreciate professort Murray's efforts to make it happen!


(pic in left: a main event in the ballroom; pic in right: Attending students:  Alonzo Hutchins, Ashley Caples, Kafond Wilder, Prisca Patrick,Antron Mckay,and Mike Spann)

image1_finPrisca picture_fin

(pic in left: with Mayor Tony Yarber of City of Jackson, MS; pic in right: Ms. Prisca Patrick with the award)







(pics showing presenting students from left: Alonzo Hutchins, Ashley Caples, Prisca Patrick, and Kafond Wilder)   

The JSU Public Policy Student Symposium – Spring 2015 was held on April 23, 2015.  The semi-annual event is prepared as a way for students to increase their independent research skills and to enhance their skills of public communications in a professional setting, and to improve their writing skills.  Sixteen students (8 doctoral, and 8 master) joined the event. Their diverse research topics cover homelessness issue in Jackson, MS, to the brownfield redevelopment.  

The students who presented their researches for the event are as follows:













Ms. Ashlee Theodore (PhD; 1st left on top in picture; title: Assessing the environmental benefits of brownfield redevelopment in Jackson, Mississippi), Ms. Almesha Campbell (PhD; 2nd left on top; title: A correlation study betweeen poverty and access to drinking water sources: a case study of Sub-Sahara Africa), Ms. LaTonya Curley (PhD: 3rd left on top; title: Promoting active transportation as a tool for decreasing obesity), Ms. Sheryl Bacon (PhD: 4th left on top;  title: Transportation as a social determinant of health in the State of Mississippi), Ms. Christine Allen (PhD: 1st left on second row; title: Impact of veterans' perception of therapist empathy on continuation in treatment: Research proposal), Mr. Christopher Roby (PhD; 2nd left on second row; title: Effectiveness analysis of the popular opinion leader intervention on reducing HIV rates in the Jackson MSA), Mr. Alan Branson (PhD; 3rd left on second row; title: Determinants of payday lending locations in Mississippi), and Ms. Denita Jones (PhD; 4th left on second row; title: Citizen engagement: a case study of the West Jackson master plan development).












Mr. Ryan Brown (MPPA;1st left on third row; title: Poverty, race, and economic development in Mississippi), Ms. Katherine Smith (MPPA;2nd left on third row; title: Debate over foster parenents' adoption rights in Southern states), Ms. Christina Spann (MPPA; 3rd left on third row; title: Tiny house movement: A solution to homelessness in Jackson, MS), Mr. Michael Bolden (MPPA; 4th left on third row; title: Childhood poverty in Mississippi), Mr. James Thompson (MPPA; 1st left on fourth row; title: Miscanthus in Mississippi: The potential and limiting factors for biomass industry in the Magnolia State), Mr. Cedric Coates (MPPA; 2nd left on fourth row; title: Trends of funding aging infrastructure in Jackson: Is the one percent tax increase enough?), Ms. Helenrine Seymour (MPPA; 3rd left on fourth row; title: Impacts of wildlife refuge in the community), and Mr. Aden Brown (MPPA; 4th left on fourth row; title: Education in Mississippi: A study of student reading achivements).

The symposium has recognized the top three presentations for PhD, and MPPA categories, respectively:


1st Place: Mr. Alan Branson (Alan Branson_payday lending location)

2nd Place: Mr. Christopher Roby (Christopher Roby_HIV intervention)

3rd Place: Ms. Christine Allen (Christine Allen_veteran treatment)


1st Place: Mr. Ryan Brown (Ryan Brown_poverty race economics)

2nd Place: Ms. Christina Spann (Christina Spann_TinyHouseMovementppt)

3rd Place: Mr. Cedric Coates (Cedric Coates_infrustructure jackson).

We appreciate your hard works embedded in your outstanding presentations, and Congratulations to the winners!!

Ms. Kayester Lee has defended her doctoral dissertation on April 24, 2015.

The title of her dissertation is 'An Evaluation of the Deptartment of Veterans Affairs Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)/Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)/Operation New Dawn (OND) Seamless Transion/Care Management Program (Advisor: Dr. Johnny Gilleylen).

Congraturations, Dr. Lee.!!!


Ms. Caludine Gee has defended her doctoral dissertation successfully on April 23, 2015.  The topic of her dissertation is 'an analysis of debt management at seven level VI public historically black colleges and universities' (Advisor: Dr. Johnny Gilleylen).

Congratulations, Dr. Gee!!!











The Hinds County Board of Supervisors meeting was held at  the JSU camus on April 20, 2015.  Our Ms. LaTonya Curley (PhD; picture in left), and Ms. Christina Spann (MPPA; pincture in right) attended the meeting, and presented their ideas on public policy issues of the County. Ms. Curley presented her impact statement on enhanced management of the detension center in the County. Ms. Spann proposed a smoking ban in the multi-housing units within the County. After their presentations, there were responses from the Board members on the current programs in place on the issues and discussions followed for better management of the issues. A detailed report of the event is available at

JSU hosted the event as part of its State and Local Government Program, increasing opportunities for student activism and engagements among the County board supervisors, and the JSU faculty and staff members.  The JSU program is a great opportunity for our public policy students to be exposed to real administration of local governments, and to propose their fresh ideas, which are gained in classroom. Further, it is a significant additional step toward more active engagements between the neighboring local governments and the JSU public policy program.  The PPAD students' participations for City Council meetings, and County Board of Supervisors meetings of the neighboring local governments will be continued.


  Professor Chester Robinson and Professor Jae- Young  Ko attended  the closing ceremony and reception of  the JSU  Academy for Research  and Scholarly  Engagement on  April 17, 2015.  The JSU Center for  University Scholars  and the Division of Research and  Federal Relations  have been operating a year-long  training  program of research proposal  development for  the JSU faculty  members.  Since  its  beginning in  2012, the  program has trained 76 JSU  scholars, and  about 30  proposals were developed and  submitted  from the  faculty members attending the training program for the  first two years,  generating external fundings of  approximately $950,000.  Professor Robinson and Professor  Ko are among the twenty-three faculty members of Research Cohort III  for 2014-2015. They have completed the training program actively and  have been developing proposals for external funding opportunities using the knowledges gained from the training program.


 Dr. Ko attended the 3rd Annual HBCU Student Climate  Change Conference, held in New Orleans, from March 26-29, 2015, hosted by the Deep South Center for Environmental Justice, Dillard  University .

 Students and faculty members from 21 HBCU  institutions across the nation, including  Jackson State  University, discussed the challenges and health risks of  minority communities near polluting industrial facilities,  and associated environmental justice, and potential  health risks of minority communities driven by the climate  change. During the Conference, they also discussed  logistics  regarding sending the HBCU delegation to the   upcoming  2015 UN Climate Change Conference, in Paris, France, from Nov. 30, to Dec. 11, 2015.      

 Dr. Ko gave a presentatation (titled, 'Challenges in developing and  implementing coastal protection projects against increasing sea level  rise: A case study of the Caernarvon river diversion in Louisiana.'), and  built networks with the faculty members from other HBCU institutions on  coastal management, and devoted efforts to recruit students for the  Public Policy Program at Jackson State University. 

Attending ASPA 2015, March 6-10, 2015

March 12th, 2015 by ppad

Ashlee theodore

 The annual conference of American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) is  THE conference for public policy scholars and practioners nationally and  internationally. Representatives from the Department of Public Policy and  Administration attended the ASPA annual conference, which was held in Chicago,  from March 6 to 10, 2015. Ms. Ashlee Theodore, PhD student (Photo in  left), gave a  presentation (title: 'Equality in public service delivery: Assessing the  performance  of 311 service centers on vulnerable pouplations').  Associate  Professor Jae-  Young Ko gave a presentation (title: 'Challenges in  implementing collaborative governance for large-scale ecosystem restoration  project: A case study of the Caernravon river diversion in Louisiana), and he also served as a session chair.   Our department was also represented by past ASPA President, Professor Sylvester Murray (1986-1987), and the newly elected President of the Conference of Minority Public Administrators (COMPA), Associate Professor Gloria BillingsleyShe is in charge of planning and hosting the upcoming COMPA annual conference, which will be held in Jackson in 2016.

jsu Group Photo_1

Students and faculty members of the Public Policy and  Administration attended the annual conference of  the National Conference of Minority Public Administrators  (COMPA), held in Philadelphia, from Feb. 18 to Feb. 20,  2015.The JSU attendees served as panel members and  gave presentations during the conference (Picture shown from the left to the right: Professor Sylvester Murray, Professor Frances Liddell, Ms. Alla Frank, Ms. Tina Collier, Mr. Aden Brown, Professor Ester Stokes, Professor Gloria Billingsley, Ms. Angeline Walton, Mr. Antron McKay-West and Mr. Michael Bolden).    Further our  faculty members were recognized for their contributions to  the COMPA conference.  Especially professor  Billingsley  will serve the President of the organization for the coming  term, and the conference will be held in Jackson, MS next year. 

billingsley recognition_3


(Left: Professor Gloria Billingsley; Right: Professor Ester Stokes)


compa public policy debate_2

( two in the left of the left pic : Aden Brown and Alla Frank in a panel session; second in the right of the right pic: Antron McKay-West during ceremony).

JSU Students participated in the Annual Student Public Policy debate on mixed teams with students from other participating universities.  Antron McKay-West, a masters student in our program,  was on the winning team and won a trophy for his participation.  He also represented JSU on the Young Scholars Panel, discussing issues in marginalized communities.  Jackson State University College of Public Service and the Department of Public Policy and Administration were the Silver Level Sponsors. Finally, the Department received a plaque for bringing the most students to the conference.