SCORE grant received for POL 880

Dr Moens receives a SCORE (Strengthening the Core) Fund for Innovation in Graduate Education and launches a new project to integrate experiential learning and field work into graduate education in political science. 

The SFU-NATO Field School, Simulation, and experiential learning program is a 6-unit intensive graduate level Political Science course that combines coursework with experiential learning. The program is open to university students from across Canada and provides the opportunity for graduate students to learn and interact with experts and political decision-making from various national governments and international organizations such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU) in their working environment. This includes visiting and embedded experts from the Department of National Defence, Global Affairs Canada, the Canadian Armed Forces, NATO and academia, as well as high-level briefings at NATO Headquarters (NATO HQ), Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), EU Military Staff Headquarters, and the Canadian Delegation to the European Union.

This program aims to provide graduate students with:

  •  Opportunities to network and collaborate with other Canadian and international students interested in international relations and security.
  •  Access to mentors, professional networks and internship opportunities in national governments, international organizations and academia.
  •  Experience in preparing decision documents for senior political decision makers, preparing and conducting press conferences, working professionally in teams in a multilateral framework, and negotiation and public speaking skills.
  •  Comprehensive knowledge of NATO, the EU, Canada’s national defence structures, current foreign policy and security challenges (such as cyber security, strategic communication and terrorism), and policy making and policy implementation in defence, international security, and peace operations from the academic, military and policy maker’s perspective. 
  •  Understanding of the various career paths available to them in diplomacy, foreign policy and defence both inside and outside academia. 

With the SCORE funding, Dr Moens and his team will assess how effective the NATO Field School Program is in achieving these aims and identify some of the more general challenges in providing effective experiential and field-based learning for graduate students in the social sciences.