Robertson School of Government Dean's Corner
Greetings from the Robertson School of Government! It has been incredibly hot here in Virginia, so it is hard to imagine that the “Fall semester” is upon us, but classes begin next week. It has been a busy and productive summer as recent graduates enter the workforce and faculty taught, traveled, and wrote.
In this newsletter you will meet RSG alum Allen Anjo and his wife Julie, who went from working in the Virginia Commonwealth Attorney’s office and Regent Law School to Kona, Hawaii where they are setting up a justice and advocacy center for YWAM. You will also meet our newest faculty member, Assistant Professor of Public Administration, Elijah Agyapong, Ph.D.
RSG is training the next generation of leaders—people like Allen and Julie Anjo—who deeply care about principled public service. Please consider passing on this newsletter to your colleagues and acquaintances who might be considering graduate education in government, political science, international relations, or public administration.
Eric Patterson, Ph.D.
Dean and Professor
Robertson School of Government
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The Robertson School of Government is happy to welcome Dr. Elijah Agyapong as a new Assistant Professor in the Masters of Public Administration Program. Dr. Agyapong successfully wrote and defended his dissertation entitled, “Representative Bureaucracy and Bureaucratic Responsiveness: Linking Passive and Active Representation in Ghana’s Education Bureaucracy” and earned his doctorate from the Harry S. Truman School of Public Affairs, University of Missouri, earlier this year. Dr. Agyapong graduated summa cum laude with his Master of Public Administration from the University of Akron, Ohio.
Dr. Agyapong’s current research includes articles on review at major journals including “Using Theories of Bureaucratic Responsiveness to Improve Governance: A Justification for Increased Empirical Research in Africa” and “Ghana’s Surprising Democratic Success: The Role of Civil Society.”
Allen Anjo (RSG, Law ’13) and his wife, Julie, Legal Advisors for Youth With A Mission (YWAM), a missions organization that currently works in over 1,100 locations in more than 180 countries to send volunteer missionaries around the world to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. Allen and Julie are part of the General Counsel’s office at the YWAM base in Kona, Hawaii, and are about to launch a School of, Advocacy, Law & Justice which will provide training in legal advocacy to missionaries who are passionate about seeing the justice of God come to the “least of these” throughout the world.
Allen is originally from the small province of Nagaland in northeastern India, and he came to the United States in 2000 to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in business and computer science at Liberty University. He said, “That is where I met Julie; she was among the inaugural class of the law school there. I got a Master’s of Religion in missiology and a Master’s of Divinity in apologetics. She graduated in 2007, I finished in 2008, and we got married in 2009.” Julie had done a Discipleship Training School (DTS) with YWAM and received her Bachelors in Biblical Studies with YWAM’s University of the Nations. During a mission trip in Burma she heard the people’s stories of injustice and oppression and she felt the Lord speaking to her saying, “Be my voice for the voiceless.” This is what led her to go to law school.
With a shared passion for missions and fighting injustice, Allen and Julie came to Regent University in 2010 so Allen could pursue dual degrees from the Robertson School of Government and the School of Law. As Allen worked on his M.A. in Government and his Juris Doctorate, Julie began working as Assistant Director of Admissions and Financial Aid in the School of Law. In 2013, as Allen was finishing up his degree, their son Samuel was born, Allen was interning at the Virginia Beach Commonwealth Attorney’s office, and a settled future in Virginia was beginning to look promising. Allen reflected on this time and said, “At that point, I was on track to become a prosecutor and there was an opportunity for Julie to apply for the directorship. God spoke to Julie at that time and said, “You are on track right now for a good life here. Do you want that, or do you want to live life with Me as I would design it?” This was a major decision point for them, and they knew there was sacrifice on the other side, but they decided to ask God what else he might have for them. He simply told them to quit their jobs, and He would show them what was next.
Not long after, they became aware of the need for full-time legal advisors at the Kona base in Hawaii and knew it was what God had been preparing them for. So they sold their possessions, packed their bags, and made the move to Hawaii. Allen said, “Suddenly it donned on us what God had been doing in giving us this education over the last 13 years. He gave us these experiences to prepare us for this job we were going into.”
Now they provide advice to the base in a broad range of legal matters and are getting ready to launch the School of Advocacy, Law, & Justice this July. “Our desire is to equip missionaries to identify injustice, be advocates for the people suffering, and bring God’s love and freedom to them. The hope is that the school will eventually become a course in a degree program for an Associate’s, Bachelor’s, or Master’s degree through YWAM’s University of the Nations.” They are also developing plans to lead and send teams internationally to travel into the context of injustice and learn the key issues and practical steps for advocacy and legal action in specific situations. In all of this, their personal mission is: “Going into the world with law and justice for the least of these.” Though they have to raise all of their own support and have lived largely out of a suitcase for the last year-and-a-half, Allen said, “When we look at the potential of the work we are doing to impact other people, we are encouraged by the knowledge that we are able to better the lives of other people.” Not only that, but they are getting to enjoy some of the best years of their son Samuel’s life, and are expecting a baby girl in September 2016. If you would like to keep up with the Anjo’s ministry, check out their blog at this link.
RSG Adds Two New Concentrations
The Robertson School of Government is proud to announce the addition of two new concentrations for our students: Religion & Politics and Servant Leadership.
The Master of Arts in Government with a concentration in Religion & Politics is offered to students interested in the intersection of religious factors with history, American politics, culture, peace and security, and world affairs. Students will gain a solid foundation in social science theories of religion, culture, and government and study comparative politics, religion and security, legal issues (e.g. Church and State), and more. Then, build their expertise in areas such as Constitutional law, Christian ethics, Biblical law, or Islamic political thought.
The Servant Leadership concentration will enable students to more fully study and develop servant leadership character and competency, a mission-specific NASPAA competency. The concentration is an interdisciplinary program with the School of Business and Leadership, synergistically combining faculty expertise and students in both programs.
A Busy Summer for Faculty
To outsiders, the world of higher education is often viewed as having the summer off, free from studying, deadlines, and work. This is not so for the faculty of the Robertson School of Government. Indeed, over the past two years a major shift has taken place at RSG as more students choose to take summer courses. This year RSG had double the number of summer students enrolled than it had in 2015, including Public Management with Dr. Margery Coulson-Clark, Research Methods with Dr. Stephen King, and National Security Affairs with Rear Admiral Larry Baucom (USN, ret.). In addition, faculty kept busy with travel and writing projects, including the following.
Dr. Eric Patterson served three weeks with the Texas Air National Guard and spoke at Baylor University and the Armed Forces Chaplains School at Ft. Jackson, SC. His research projects included a chapter for a book on the morality of victory in war and his co-edited volume entitled Philosophers and War (forthcoming 2017).
Dr. Mary Manjikian worked on her new textbook on cybersecurity ethics and wrote an article for a book on the politics of technology. She also traveled to Munich with her family, and spent several lovely weekends in Cape Charles, Virginia, one of her favorite places!
Dr. Jeffry Morrison directed the Summer Institute on the Constitution at Georgetown University for the federal government's James Madison Foundation. In that capacity he addressed the Foundation's board (including U.S. Senators and federal judges) on Capitol Hill, met with Secretary of Education, John King Jr. (photo), and lectured at Georgetown (photo) and various presidential homes. He also lectured on American constitutionalism at the federal courthouse in New Orleans July 25-26.
Dr. Morrison with Secretary of Education, Dr. Morrison’s lecture at Georgetown University John King Jr.
Dr. Morrison’s lecture at Georgetown University
Dr. Gary Roberts spent much of his time beginning work on his next two books. The first book is on the principles of being a servant follower, and the second is on Christian character in the workplace.
Practitioner in Residence Sam Gaston attended the summer conference of ACCMA where he made a presentation on Mentoring/Coaching and made a presentation on the Joys and Challenges of Public Service to the Alabama Society for Certified Public Managers. In addition, Professor Gaston is serving another term on the Alabama City-County Management Association (ACCMA) Board of Directors and has been appointed to serve another year as Chairman of the ICMA Advisory Board on Graduate Education.
Practitioner in Residence Edwin Daley, Ph.D. was one of 40 participants in the ICMA International Summit in Prague, Czech Republic in June. The participants discussed migration, employment disparities, and intergovernmental issues that impact local governments globally. Economic issues such as Brexit were considered from the local community perspective. Dr. Daley presented a draft of ICMA 2016 Strategic Plan that will be adopted this fall in Kansas City. International representatives presented feedback as to how ICMA can improve relations with newly formed local government associations in Europe and elsewhere. Post-summit tours of local communities in Northern and Southern Czech Republic were also available.
This is the third international summit ICMA has sponsored and the 14th time ICMA's International Committee has met outside the United States. City managers from the host countries coordinate the meetings with the ICMA International Committee.
VP candidate Mike Pence visits campus – August 10, 2016
New Student Orientation – August, 18, 2016
RSG Student’s Dinner with Distinguished Professor and former Attorney General John Ashcroft – September 28, 2016
Election Night Watch Party – November 8, 2016
Post-Election Panel Discussion – November 10, 2016
A. Willis Robertson Lecture on Virginia Politics – Date TBD