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Welcome to the Political Science Department

As departmental chair, I am pleased to welcome you to the Political Science Department. We appreciate your interest. I think the students and faculty would both agree that we are engaged in asking questions and presenting ideas that are interesting in themselves and central to understanding the world in which we live. We aspire to provide a classroom and departmental setting in which students and faculty can, together, confront these issues. We also aim to help Samford students engage the world through activism, policy work and informed political participation.

The Political Science Department hosts three majors, including the traditional Political Science major and interdisciplinary majors in International Relations and Public Administration. Our full-time faculty consists of myself, William Collins, Marissa Grayson and Serena Simoni.  We also have several talented part-time professors, including Randolph Horn, Carlo Chiarenza and Andy Westmoreland (President of Samford University), and, from the Cumberland School of Law, Howard Walthall, Bill Ross and Mike DeBow.   Ivy Alexander runs the departmental office.

A Few More Details About the Department and its Three Majors

These are effective tracks to future work and study in areas such as law, public policy, international affairs, governmental service and business.

They provide the basic skills most often associated with liberal arts education. Writing, public speaking, collecting and assessing data, critical reading, independent thinking, and civic responsibility are central parts of the programs. Political Science faculty are well placed to assist students with internships in Washington, D.C., overseas, Montgomery, Birmingham and elsewhere. They are active in helping students obtain fellowships from graduate schools and national foundations.

Departmental faculty are active in assisting students in a wide variety of areas. Political Science professors play key roles in the Model United Nations, Samford-in-Washington, Pre-Law and University Fellows Programs, serve as faculty advisors for many student social justice and political groups, and run several honorary societies. Our excellent students are equally involved around campus and in the community. The department has had great success in helping to place students in top law and graduate programs. You can learn about some of their stories on our Alumni page.

So, please enjoy this website and the links we have provided. If you have questions, feel free to contact me or my colleagues. We would be happy to discuss the department with you.

Frederick M. Shepherd
Professor and Chair, Political Science Department