Our students participate in numerous groups on & off campus dedicated to public affairs concerns.

A small sampling of the campus groups includes:

Public Affairs Student Organization (PASO)
  • This student group includes all 3 departmental majors: political science, public administration, & international affairs.
  • They organize discussions of public issues and career programming.
  • Learn more about PASO's members and their activities.
Moot Court Team
  • This team participates in the annual moot court competion.
Model United Nations
International Model African Union
  • This group participates each spring in a Model AU simulation in Washington, DC.
  • The most recent simulation was held 2/19/21 through 2/21/21.
  • For more information, contact Dr. Melinda Adams at adams2mj@jmu.edu
Model European Union

Since 2015, JMU student groups (~10 students per year) have participated in the annual Mid-Atlantic European Union Simulation. This event takes place in Washington, DC and involves visits to the embassies of EU member-states and occasional guest speakers. Each student plays the role of a specific European politician—a member of the European Commission, the European Parliament, a national minister or head of government, or the president of the European Council. Students meet weekly with political science faculty members throughout the course of the fall semester. Then, at the DC event in November, they negotiate with over 100 peers from other colleges and universities. Read this recently published article that examines the extent to which participation in the event has promoted knowledge, engagement, skills, and empathy. Contact Dr. John Scherpereel for details at scherpja@jmu.edu.

Schuman Challenge

JMU student groups (~4 students per year) have participated in the annual Schuman Challenge since 2018. The Delegation of the European Union to the United States hosts this invitational event. The Delegation publishes a prompt question that asks student teams to make a proposal for transatlantic (EU-US) cooperation on a global issue of acute concern. Student teams present their proposal to a panel of European and American diplomats and policy professionals, and the top three student teams proceed to a final round that is judged by a panel of judges that typically includes the EU ambassador to the US. Students on the JMU team meet with political science faculty members throughout the spring semester as they carry out research and craft their presentation.

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