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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

Midwest Political Science Undergraduate Research Center, 2006

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Midwest Political Science Undergraduate Research Center, 2006

Pi Sigma Alpha and MSU hosted the Midwest Undergraduate Political Science Research Conference, March 23-25, 2006.  The conference drew students and faculty from a dozen colleges and universities in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska and Missouri, including, for the first time, students from the University of Iowa (Dr. Slocum's graduate alma mater).  The conference took a great deal of planning and work, but was well worth it.  Here are some photos from this special event.


The conference began Thursday, March 23 with a banquet dinner in the CSU North Ballroom.  Left to right are Abbie Raymond, Melissa Andersen, Dr. Don Ostrom (keynote speaker), Dr. Fred Slocum, Mary O'Connor and Amy Sauter.


Another view of the larger group enjoying dinner.


After a delicious dinner, keynote speaker Dr. Don Ostrom addressed us on "Research and Political Action."  Dr. Ostrom was a political science professor at Gustavus Adolphus College from 1972 to 2004, and served four terms in the Minnesota House of Representatives from 1989 to 1997.


Joining us for Thursday's dinner banquet were, left to right: John Betzler, Mary O'Connor, Melissa Andersen, Jamie Guderian and Jared Jacobsen.


One wonderful aspect of this conference was the enthusiastic participation by students.  Here, MSU student Gregory Boubel is presenting his paper "The Clash of Expectations and the Origin of the Cold War" on the International Relations panel, Friday, March 24.


MSU student Melissa Andersen contributes to an animated discussion in the Women and Politics panel, Friday, March 24.


The same Women and Politics panel provoked some lively discussion.  Unfortunately the room was a little crowded, but we made do!


Organizing a conference also entails finding faculty to serve as chairs and discussants on panels.  Here Dr. Slocum is commenting on papers as discussant for the Identity Politics panel, Saturday, March 25.  Other MSU faculty who served as panel chairs and discussants were Drs. Jackie Vieceli, Eiji Kawabata, Tomasz Inglot and Scott Granberg-Rademacker.


Students also participated by staffing the registration table for the conference.  MSU students Amy Sauter, Mary O'Connor and John Betzler were among the MSU students and alumni who helped make the conference a success.


This conference was a great occasion for a 'meeting of the minds' with University of Iowa ties.  I am flanked by University of Iowa students Lydia Pfaff (left) and Paul Heppner (right).


Friday evening we had dinner in the Heritage Room in the MSU student union.  Stomachs are in 'full digestion mode' for, left to right: Michael Looft, (MSU alumnus) Takehito Kamata, Gregory Boubel, Dr. Eiji Kawabata, Dr. Fred Slocum and Dave Sanchez.


Winners of the 'best paper' awards were, left to right: Scott Godfrey, Bemidji State University (third prize), Morgan Weiland, Carleton College (first prize) and Meghan Redd, Grinnell College (second prize).


Each conference participant received a handsome mug with the conference name and MSU's logo.  The famous 'mug shot' includes MSU students and faculty, left to right: Gregory Boubel, Mike Looft, Mary O'Connor, Fred Slocum, Eiji Kawabata, Melissa Andersen, and graduate students Dave Sanchez and Takehito Kamata.

Click here to go to the Pi Sigma Alpha event photo page.

Click here to go to the Pi Sigma Alpha main page.

Click here to go to Dr. Slocum's home page.