The Political Science Department at Rutgers is internationally known for its faculty in American Politics, Comparative Politics, Gender and Politics, International Relations, Political Theory, and Public Law. Our department engages broad questions about such topics as race and inequality, causes of war, how voters decide, and what influences government decision-making, both in the United States and abroad. Our faculty are frequent contributors to public debates, providing expert analysis and sharing academic knowledge with the public.
The department runs the Center for the Experimental Study of Politics and Psychology and has close ties to the Eagleton Institute of Politics and its Center for Public Interest Polling. Several of our faculty and former graduate students are affiliated with the Center for American Women and Politics, and our graduate program is the only one in the nation to have a major field of study in Women and Politics. The Rutgers Women and Politics program is currently celebrating its 30th year. The department offers an undergraduate major and minor, a master’s degree in UN and Global Studies, and a competitive PhD program that trains students for careers in academia and research.
Dr. Henry Plotkin, formerly Assistant Professor of Political Science at Livingston College , died peacefully at age 74 on November 4, 2017, after a short battle with amyloidosis. Henry’s death has been a sad shock to his colleagues in the academic world, state government, and the volunteer organization, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA). Henry and his wife of 35 years, Susanne Peticolas, will receive the CASA Honor Award at the organization’s annual Toast on May 6, 2018.
Dr. Plotkin devotedly worked at three successive careers. After earning his Ph.D in Political Science here, he taught at Rutgers while co-authoring three books on the presidential elections of 1976-1984. Moving to state government, he led efforts on youth job training, becoming executive director of the State Employment and Training Commission in 1987 and administrator of the New Jersey Youth Corps Program in the Department of Community Affairs. Upon his retirement in 2008, he joined the Boards of both NJ CASA and Middlesex County, leading efforts to provide out-of-home placement for abused and neglected children.. He will be sadly missed by his many friends and colleagues.
Dr. Mazen Adi - Personal Statement
December 8, 2017 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Mazen Adi is a frequent instructor in the department's United Nations & Global Policy Studies MA program, and an occasional instructor in our undergraduate program. Here is a brief description of his very unusual background.
- Dr. Mazen Adi worked as a career diplomat at the Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs for 16 years. He holds a MA degree in government and political science from St. John’s University, Rome, Italy (2004); a Ph.D. from the University of Rome II Tor Vergata (2009); and a LLM from the School of Law, St. John’s University, New York (2015).
- Dr. Adi represented his county in different capacities, including working in the 6th Committee at United Nations headquarters in New York.
- During his diplomatic career, Dr. Adi delivered statements on behalf of the Syrian government. He, as diplomats in all foreign services, executed his country’s foreign policy, rather than formulating it.
- After having engaged in several armed conflicts, Syria and Israel have still not concluded a peace agreement. On the diplomatic front, the two countries have continued to exchange harsh statements at all levels, especially at the United Nations.
- Syria’s population is comprised of many different religions and ethnicities, including Syrians of the Jewish faith. Throughout history, Syria’s Jews have lived side by side with their fellow Syrians, who are Muslims and Christians. No Muslim can be considered a true Muslim without accepting that Jews and Christians are the “people of the book.”
- None of the statements delivered by Dr. Adi at the United Nations on behalf of his country attacked Judaism as a religion. Rather, the statements reflected Syria’s political conflict with Israel, which has no relationship to religion.
- Dr. Adi worked at the Syrian Mission to the United Nations between 2007 and 2014.
- Dr. Adi has always hoped for a peaceful and democratic solution to the tragic crisis in which Syria is currently embroiled. Personally, he had been vocal in opposing any act of violence committed by any party to the conflict.
- Dr. Adi has publically supported the democratic process in Syria, including fair and free elections.
- Dr. Adi resigned from the Syrian diplomatic service in August 2014.
- Dr. Adi has been teaching in the MA Program in Political Science – United Nations and Global Policy Studies (UNMA) at Rutgers since September 2015. He has developed several courses, including International Criminal Law and Anti-Corruption, Theories of Terrorism and Counter Terrorism, and The United Nations: Politics and Practices, a course in which students are able to study with practitioners at the United Nations.
- Dr. Adi’s courses have received excellent evaluations from UNMA students. All students have complimented him for the course content and the professionalism with which he teaches his courses.
- As a former diplomat, Dr. Adi has always been aware of the fact that some might have pre-conceived ideas about him, based solely on his background. However, he has always addressed his background during the first class of each course he has taught, and it has not impeded his ability to conduct his courses in a professional academic manner.
- Dr. Adi is very grateful to Rutgers University for allowing him the opportunity to teach courses on international law and to promote principles of peace and justice in an academic environment which represents the best of American values, especially respect for political and cultural diversity and freedom of speech and expression.