Every year, the Department sends two students to represent UMBC at this conference. The Department covers registration fees and transportation to West Point, while the conference organizers provide room and board while there. If you are interested, please send a brief (one paragraph) letter of interest, including why you would like to go, what makes you qualified to represent the Department and your GPA to: Dr. Brian Grodsky, firstname.lastname@example.org. All applications must be received by September 18.
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On behalf of Colonel Suzanne Nielsen, the head of the Department of Social Sciences, I would like to extend an invitation to University of Maryland, Baltimore County to send two student delegates to participate in the 71st annual Class of 1971 Student Conference on U.S. Affairs (SCUSA 71), hosted by the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York. SCUSA 71 meets from the evening of Wednesday, October 30th until noon on Saturday, November 2nd.
The largest and oldest conference of its type, SCUSA is an important means through which we promote civil-military engagement among future leaders from around the world. In addition to 60 cadet delegates, approximately 200 undergraduate students from over 100 universities and 20-30 countries attend SCUSA each year. Conference highlights include an opening senior panel discussion on the evening of October 30th, a keynote address banquet on November 1st, four roundtable sessions, and a closing session on November 2nd at which delegates will present recommendations for U.S. foreign policy developed during their roundtable sessions. Our keynote speaker this year is Ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison, current U.S. Ambassador to NATO, and former United States Senator. Other recent keynote speakers have included Ambassador Susan Rice, Ambassador Douglas Lute, Dr. Richard Haass, Secretary Madeleine Albright, Ambassador Thomas Pickering, and Lieutenant General (Ret.) Brent Scowcroft.
The Conference theme this year is “Advancing the National Interest: The Intersection of Domestic Politics and American Foreign Policy.” The United States and its democratic allies and partners face important challenges to effective governance, as turbulent domestic politics constrain the ability of national leaders to develop effective policies—at home and abroad. While globalization has improved the world’s overall standard of living, the benefits have been uneven. Even within developed countries, some citizens have had their economic status threatened by international market forces, while others have come to perceive threats to valued aspects of their identity. The resulting political divisions have made it more difficult for elected policy makers to make the compromises essential to effective governance. To succeed in this environment, American policy makers will have to recognize and account for new political, economic, and social dynamics as they define and pursue the national interest. At the 71st annual Class of 1971 Student Conference on U.S. Affairs, delegates will analyze multifaceted, thought-provoking challenges that affect the world we know today. Working with colleagues from around the globe, SCUSA 71 delegates will tackle relevant problems and formulate feasible ways that the United States can convert present challenges into future opportunities.