International Relations Week brings global studies to students

Erin Hausmann, Staff Writer

International Relations Week was held from Feb. 27 to March 3 by the department of international relations in partnership with Bucknell Student Government (BSG) and Sigma Iota Rho, the international relations honor society. Many on-campus events were held throughout the week, including a visiting speaker, student panels, student exhibitions, a documentary screening, and a game of international relations Jeopardy.

Professor of International Relations Emek Ucarer explained that after being approached by BSG to partner with them to plan an International Relations Week, Sigma Iota Rho and the department “enthusiastically welcomed this invitation and set out to develop a series of events to familiarize our campus with our major and our students and share our fascination with global affairs with our campus,” Ucarer said.

Feb. 27 featured a lecture on Indian politics, “Maximum State in Neoliberal Times: Reflections on India under Modi” by Professor A.K. Ramakrishnan of Jawaharlal Nehru University in the Willard Smith Library. Ramakrishnan is a leading Indian scholar who previously spent two years at the University as a visiting professor in the department of international relations. His talk covered contemporary political dynamics in India under Narendra Modi’s leadership.

In partnership with the Career Development Center, a lunchtime panel featuring five graduating international relations majors, Rebecca Baptiste-Forbes ’17, Emma Halper ’17, Morgan Klein ’17, Carolyn Wan ’17, and Nate Riggins ’17, was held on March 1 in the Traditional Reading Room. The panel, titled “IR Student Panel: Who We Are and What We Do,” allowed the seniors to share their experiences in becoming international relations majors and speak about the various internships they have held with fellow and potential majors.

The event on March 2 was a screening of “Grace, Milly, Lucy … Child Soldiers” in Academic West 214 at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. with the Third World Film Series. The documentary is about female child soldiers who were abducted from their families at a young age and forced to become killers, wives, and mothers to those in the Lord’s Resistance Army, a rebellion force in the conflict in Uganda, according to Ucarer.

The week ended on March 3 with “IR Jeopardy!” in the Academic West first-floor events lounge, where international relations majors and non-majors alike could compete for artisanal prizes benefiting the Bucknell Brigade, eat pizza, and show their knowledge of world affairs.

“I’m really happy to see that the international relations faculty is increasing their programming for current and prospective majors. We are one of the larger majors on campus and have a lot to offer in terms of academic diversity (four different thematic tracks and regional concentrations). I love my major, and it’s great to get to know my professors and fellow majors outside of the classroom,” Christian Priel ’19 said.

“As a first-year IR student, I’m really excited to see and attend this week’s offerings and am happy to see the interest the department has in exposing students to international studies on campus,” Natalie Minella ’20 said.

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