Two PPAD students and Professor Sylvester Murray attended the Annual Conference of Mississippi Political Science Association (MSPSA), held at Millsaps College, Jackson, Mississippi, on February 7th and 8th, 2020. 

Mr. Lamar Johnson (doctoral student) presented his research on impacts of out-migration in Jackson, Mississippi (title: Urban disinvestment in inner city by growth of suburban communities: a case study of Jackson metropolitan area).  Ms. Lawren M. Long (doctoral student) gave a talk on her dissertation research (title: An impact study of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act on childhood obesity). 



(From left in pic: Professor Sylvester Murray, Ms. Lawren M. Long, and Mr. Lamar C. Johnson)
























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Mississippi ASPA Conference

January 27th, 2020 by ppad

The Mississippi ASPA (American Society for Public Administration) Conference was held at the Mississippi State University  on Jan 27, 2020.
Ms. Lawren Long (PhD student) gave her presentation (title: ' Evaluating the impacts of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2020 on Childhood Obesity Rates'). Mr. Chauncey Spears (MPPA student)  reported his research findings on public education in state (topic: 'School accountability, race, poverty and teacher quality in Mississippi: opportunity for more socially equitable accountability model'). Also, Dr. Jae-Young Ko (faculty) shared his research output (title: 'Employing ecosystem service for affordable options of environmental regulations in the community'). Professor Sylvester Murray and professor (retired) Frances P. Liddell also represented the JSU PPAD program as a former ASPA president, and a former ASPA_MS chapter president, respectively. During the conference, Dr. Jae-Young Ko was elected President-Elect. He will host the conference at the Jackson State University next year.

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Students summer internships at the National Park Service offer:

  • Full-time work for 12 weeks
  • Pay $16/hour
  • An all expense-paid student symposium in Washington DC
  • Be mentored by a NPS supervisor
  • Network with federal employees
  • Eligible for Direct Hire Authority upon program completion

Applications for Summer 2020 internships are open now through January 24th, 2020.

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The 2019 Fall Commencement

December 6th, 2019 by ppad

The 2019 Fall Commencement was held at the Lee E. Williams Athletic and Assembly Center, on December 6, 2015.

Five PhD and one MPPA (MPA) students received their degrees during the ceremony.

PhD: Dr. Susie L. Calbert (Advisor: Professor Gloria Billingsley),  Dr. Valarie T. Jackson (Advisor: Professor: Professor Johnny Gilleylen, Sr), Dr. Keilani R. Vanish (Advisor: Professor Jae-Young Ko), Dr. Melita I. Watkins (Advisor: Professor Johnny Gilleylen, Sr.), and Dr. Kafond J. Wilder (Advisor: Professor Johnny Gilleylen, Sr.).

MPPA (MPA): Mr. Antron M. McKay.









(On the left pic, from left: Dr. Kafond J. Wilder, Dr. Melita I. Watkins, Dr. Keilani R. Vanish, Dr. Valarie T. Jackson, Dr. Susie L. Calbert, and  Professor Johnny Gilleylen, Sr., Dept. Chair) 

(On the left pic, Mr. Antron M. McKay)


Congratulations to all of the graduates!!! 

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JSU Public Policy Student Symposium-2019 Fall

November 22nd, 2019 by ppad

The JSU Public Policy Student Symposium was held at the JSU downtown Campus on November 21, 2019. Since its inauguration in the fall 2013, organized by Professor Jae-Young Ko,  the student symposium has been a research outlet for the graduate students, playing critical roles in producing 9 student publications, 23 student presentations for state/regional/national/international conferences, and three awards (two best graduate student research awards from the MS political science association, and one from the SECOPA) so far.  During the event on Nov. 21, 2019, six PhD and MPPA student presentations were made. They are Chauncey Spears (MPPA: School Accountability, Race, Poverty and Teacher Quality in Mississippi: Opportunity for More Socially Equitable Accountability Model), Lawren M. Long (PhD: Evaluating the impacts of the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 on Childhood Obesity Rates), Lamar C. Johnson (PhD:Impacts of Disinvestment Policies on Minorities in Urban Cities ), Oni Omoregie ( PhD: An Explanatory Study of Substance Abuse Trends and Potential Policy Options in the US), Lena Jones (PhD: Intergovernmental Relations and the Evolution of National Healthcare Coverage: Cooperative Federalism or Federal Takeover?),  and  Sandra F. Williams (PhD: Mental Health and The Criminal Justice System: A Revolving Door).

Among the presentations, the outstanding research works of the following students were recognized by awarding the Certificate of Achievement:

Phd: 1st place: Lamar C. Johnson 3_ Johnson Research Presentation Fall 2019 Symposium ; 2nd place: Lawren M. Long ; 3rd place: Sandra F. Williams

MPPA: 1st place: Chauncey Spears 1_School Accountability, Race, Poverty and Teacher Final ; 2nd place: N/A; 3rd place: N/A

Before the student presentation, Professor Sylvester Murray (ASPA President for 1986-87) gave a talk on Ethics in the Public Sector for his keynote speech. 

The attending students will be supported by Professor Ko, when they want to attend the inaugural conference of ASPA-MS Chapter, at Mississippi State University, on January 27, 2020, and/or the annual conference of Mississippi Political Science Association at Millsaps College, on February 7-8, 2020.

Thank you for the hard works embedded in the outstanding presentations of the participating students. The attendances of Professors  Johnny Gilleylen and Jae-Young Ko and Dr. Alan Branson and other students are greatly appreciated!!!!






 (In pics, from top left: Professor Sylvester Murray, Mr. Chauncey Spears, Ms. Lawren M. Long, Mr. Lamar C. Johnson, Mr. Oni Oemrigie, Ms. Lena Jones, Ms. Sandra F. Williams, and a picture showing the event)


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Financial assistance for students with disabilities is available.

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Athletics Staff (Charles A. Smith/University Communications)

Britani Danielle Johnson obtained her Master Degree in Public Policy and Administration in 2015. She was recently appointed as the community relations coordinator for the Buffalo Bills, a National Football League (NFL) team in Buffalo, New York. In her role, Johnson is responsible for organizing and implementing community initiatives, as well as actively engaging in the Buffalo community to assess needs and opportunities that lead to productive ways for the organization to become community partners.

Congratulations and Best Wishes, Ms. Johnson!

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The Alpha Kappa Mu Honor Society at JSU inducteed new members on Nov. 4, 2019.

Five students at Dept. of Public Policy & Administraton have become new members of the honor society.

(In pic, from left: Janice Simmons, Adrieme Walker, Kafond Wilder, Kathleen Smith, and Latoya Curley).



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Ms. Valarie Jackson defended her dissertation (title: Comparative Analysis of Nurse Staffing in Counties Most Affected by Vacancy and Turnover 2013-2017) on Oct. 18, 2019.   Her dissertation analyzed the current Registered Nurse (RN) staffing issue at hospitals in Mississippi. She also suggested her ideas on how to deal with challenges coming from the shortage of RN in hospitals in State. Dr. Johnny Gilleylen served as the dissertation chair/adviser.  She joined the PPAD doctoral program in the fall 2013. Congratulations, Dr. Jackson!

(In pic, from left: Dr. Valarie Jackson, Dr. Johnny Gilleylen, and Dr. Jae-Young Ko)

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Ms. Vanish has defended her dissertation

October 16th, 2019 by ppad

Ms. Keilani R, Vanish defended her dissertation (title: A Performance Evaluation Study of Public Historically Black Universities in Mississippi After the Ayers Settlement ) on Oct. 16, 2019. Her dissertation analyzed the impacts of financial resources coming through the Ayers Settlement on selected performance indicators of Alcorn State University, Jackson State University, and Mississippi Valley State University. She also suggested her ideas on how to deal with challenges coming from the closure of financial resources from the Ayers Settlement. She joined the PPAD doctoral program in the fall 2013. Dr. Jae-Young Ko served as the dissertation chair/adviser.  Congratulations, Dr. Vanish!

(In pic, from left: Dr. Ester Stokes, Dr. Keilani Vanish, Dr. Jae-Young Ko, and Dr. Johnny Gilleylen)

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