Alan Branson

March 7th, 2017 by ppad

Alan Branson successfully defended his dissertation on ‘Determinants of payday lending and bank branch locations in Mississippi.’  Dr. Jae-Young Ko served as the committee chair. Branson came to Jackson State University in Fall 2011 determined to earn a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration. On February 28, 2017, this purpose came into focus when he effectively presented his research. He holds a MBA degree from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  Currently, he is the Chief Operating Officer at the HOPE Credit Union, an entity of Hope Enterprise Corporation where he has been employed since 1994.

We salute Mr. Branson for his accomplishment.

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cockerhamThe Department of Public Policy and Administration (PPAD) hosted the 2017 Annual Conference of the Mississippi Political Science Association (MSPSA) at the Jackson State University Downtown Campus, 101 West Capitol St. on February 10th and 11th, 2017.  Attending the event were political scientists, faculty, and undergraduate and graduate students from Belhaven University, Delta State University, Jackson State University, Millsaps College, Mississippi College, Mississippi Valley State University, Morehouse College, Talladega College, Texas Tech University, University of Mississippi, and University of Southern University.  The theme of the Conference was “Politics, Policy and Diversity.”  The featured speakers for the conference were former US Secretary of Agriculture, Alphonso Michael (Mike) Espy and the Honorable Angela Cockerham of the Mississippi House of Representatives.


Secretary Espy was appointed USDA Secretary by President Bill Clinton in 1993.  Prior to serving as Secretary, Mr. Espy served for seven years as a member of the US House of Representatives, becoming the first African-American member of that bespy2ody from the State of Mississippi, since the Reconstruction-era.  He also served the State of Mississippi as an Assistant Attorney General and as Director of the Mississippi Office of Consumer Protection. In 1980, he was appointed as an Assistant Secretary of State and served as Director of the Office of Public Lands.  Secretary Espy provided a spirited presentation and discussion of the role of the US Electoral College process in our democratic system of government and the future of the national Democratic Party.

ladyThe Honorable Angela Cockerham is an attorney and represents House District 96 in the Mississippi House of Representatives which includes Adams, Amite, Pike and Wilkinson counties.  Elected to the House in 2006, she is a member of 11 state legislative committees, and serves as Chairman of the Energy Committee and as Vice Chairman of the Management Committee.  Representative Cockerham has been the primary sponsor of over 477 bills.  A graduate of Jackson State University, Tufts University, and Loyola University, Ms. Cockerham teaches law at the Mississippi College School of Law.  Representative Cockerham provided conference participants detailed information and discussion of major policy issues on the current legislative agenda of the Mississippi House of Representatives.

The two-day event was organized by Dr. Jae-Young Ko, a PPAD Associate Professor and the 2016-2017 Vice-Prekosident of MSPSA. Dr. Ko was elected as the organization’s president for the 2017-2018 fiscal year.  Jackson State University, the College of Public Service, and the Department of Public Policy and Administration provided the conference site and sponsored the day-one luncheon and evening reception. Dr. Anna S. Blumenthal of Morehouse College and outgoing President of the Mississippi Political Science Association said, “This was the best Mississippi Political Science Association conference ever.” Mr. Alan Branson, PPAD doctoral student said, “Congratulations on the conference’s success.  The increased opportunities for students to hear and present their research are wonderful.”  According to Dr. Johnny B. Gilleylen Sr., PPAD Chairman, “Hosting the conference was a wonderful opportunity for our faculty and students to collaborate across academic disciplines and institutions outside of the University.  The College of Public Service’s academic units, PPAD and the Department of Urban and Regional Planning, collaborated with the College of Liberal Arts’ Department of Political Science to extend the University into our external communities, and fulfill important components of our missions.”  Dr. Ricardo A. Brown, Dean of the College of Public Service stated, “In light of the recent historic Presidential Election, it was fortunate that JSU had the opportunity to host this annual meeting among a diverse group of faculty and students from colleges and universities that comprise the MSPSA.  Congratulations to Drs. Ko and Gilleylen for their work in hosting this important conference.”

With the conference theme, “Politics, Policy and Diversity,” panel discussions and presentations included:

  • Obama-Trump: The Peaceful Transfer of Power/US Presidential Elections
  • Public Policy Issues for Community Development in Mississippi
  • Democracy and the 2016 US Presidential Election
  • Diversity and the Intersection of Public Policy
  • Southern Politics in Transition
  • Liberty, Equality and Race
  • Are We Entering into the Era of Post-Factual Politics?
  • Issues in Rural Communities
  • The President as a Political Leader in Agenda Setting
  • Contemporary Political Agendas
  • Politics and Humanities in War

PPAD doctoral student, Ms. Debra Monroe-Lax, was the winner of conference’s “Student Research Paper of the Year.”

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Purpose Accomplished, Homeward Bound

December 19th, 2016 by ppad

anan-121416ananfamilygraduationAnan M. Abu Hummour dreamed as a little girl of coming to America to get a degree.  On August 10, 2012 she arrived in Jackson, Mississippi to pursue a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration at Jackson State University.  This program was chosen “because I saw a real potential in this degree to prepare me with the knowledge, skills, and experience that I needed to achieve my goals.” As one objective came true, another one was placed on hold when she left husband, Mohammad and a new born son, Owen in Jordan.  It was “incredible painful” for her to resume studying in another country away from her family. The desire to make life better for those she loves drove Anan to pursue her aspirations of studying abroad.  A year later Mohammad joined her at JSU majoring in the Master of Public Policy and Administration program.  The two of them faced financial, social, and personal challenges; however they refused to allow trials to kill their ambitions. They weathered the storms of life through people who inspired them to keep moving forward. A “wonderful student/professor relationship” between them and the Dr. Johnny Gilleylen developed. He served as Anan’s dissertation chair.

Two years ago, Mohammad and Anan gave birth to their second child, Eden.  Eden became the youngest student in the department.  She attended many classes and departmental events. On December 9, 2016 Eden witnessed her daddy receiving his MPPA degree and her mother being hooded for her Ph.D. degree during the Fall Commencement Exercise.  Through all the difficult times Anan faced, she maintained academic excellence.  She received numerous awards including being inducted into three academic honor societies:  Chi Alpha Epsilon, Alpha Chi, and Pi Alpha Alpha.

Mahammad, Anan, and Eden are excited to be going home to Jordan where Owen awaits their arrival.

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A Servant Heart

December 12th, 2016 by ppad

francesliddell2016Dr. L. Frances P. Liddell, retired former Interim Chair and Associate Professor of Jackson State University’s Department of Public Policy and Administration was inducted as a National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) fellow on November 17 2016. The NAPA was created to help public sector leaders meet the important and varied management challenges of today and anticipate those of the future. Fellows of NAPA are instrumental in meeting goals set forth by the organization.  They possess unmatched wealth of expertise and serve as the cornerstone of the organization.  They contribute valuable insight and experience to the oversight of Academy’s projects and provide general guidance of the organization. Fellows are also the Academy's primary resource for addressing emerging issues and contributing to the intellectual and popular discourse on government through its Standing Panels.

Dr. Liddell joined 48 peer administrators and thought leaders as part of the 2016 Fellow class that underwent a rigorous nomination process. Fellows bring to NAPA a deep understanding of financial management, human resources, technology, and administrative functions at all levels of government.  They also direct most of Academy's studies.

We salute Dr. Liddell’s accomplishments for her serving heart that benefit others.  True testaments of serving others can be found in her long standing memberships with American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) and Conference of Minority Public Administrators (COMPA).

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Fall 2015 Graduation Clearance for Students

October 12th, 2015 by ppad

Graduation Clearance has been extended through 10/23/2015. This process can not be done online. Students must contact the department in order for the process to be completed. If you have any questions, please contact Ms. LaTesha Dotson @ 601-979-6358/ latesha.c.dotson@jsums.edu, Mrs. Carolyn K. Divinty @ 601-979-8184/ carolyn.k.divinity@jsums.edu, and Dr. Johnny B. Gilleylen @ 601-979-8786/ johnny.b.gilleylen@jsums.edu .

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