REDDING, Calif.—Simpson University’s 130 graduates walking the stage Saturday include two women and six men making history as the college’s first political science majors.
Kyle Carpenter, Solomon Dutton, Shane Geer, Chloe Lynch, Noah Marquez, Michelle Mbok, Brandon Moss, and Anthony Spencer will join other graduates from the School of Traditional Undergraduate Studies, School of Adult and Graduate Professional Studies, Betty M. Dean School of Nursing, A.W. Tozer Theological Seminary, and the School of Education at the 10 a.m. ticketed ceremony inside the James M. Grant Student Life Center.
It will be the second commencement ceremony for new Simpson University President Norman Hall, who joined the university in June. The university received full accreditation renewal with no sanctions in March and has announced new athletic and academic programs, as well as new scholarships.
Simpson University’s political science program offers a standard track that prepares students in American government, and law policy—ideal for a pre-law candidate. Students have the option of pursuing an emphasis in criminal justice, international studies, or social justice.
Marquez, a resident of Big Bear City and Simpson wrestler; Moss, a basketball player from Stockton; and Dutton, who is from Mandura, Ethiopia, want to use their degrees to pursue careers in law enforcement. Classes in the major include numerous guest speakers and field trips involving local law enforcement agencies.
“I took classes that specifically targeted my career goal,” said Dutton, who also played soccer for the Red Hawks.
Lynch, who is from Gardnerville, Nev., and also served as a resident assistant, wants to use her degree in the nonprofit sector. “I would love to work with organizations to provide relief to areas of the world struck by poverty, natural disasters, and injustice, as well as break down religious, ethnic, and racial divides between peoples, both locally and internationally,” she said.
Mbok, who is from Leesburg, Va., plans to take the LSAT this summer and apply to law school. Her desire is to practice civil rights law.
Geer, from Las Vegas, wants to explore the possibilities of writing public policy or getting into criminal law. He had the opportunity to work on a university policy proposal with a professor.
Several political science graduates said the highlight of the program for them was the professors, Drs. Cherry McCabe and Jamie Williams.
“They got to know each student and our individual passions and did their best to incorporate what we love about political science into our learning,” Lynch said.
Moss said the class sizes and availability of professors were helpful. “They were always able to help me with concepts of policy that I was not familiar with,” he said.
Mbok, who spent a semester in Washington, D.C., with the American Studies Program while at Simpson, said the political science major helped equip her for a public life without fearing the unknown.
“I experienced growth in political diversity and my ability to perceive political engagement through my faith,” she said.
Simpson’s political science program seeks to prepare students for professional or graduate-level settings through rigorous educational experiences, as well as learning how to engage faithfully and effectively as a Christian in the contemporary political world. Learn more at simpsonu.edu/political science.
Read more about the April 27 commencement here.
The commencement speaker will be Dr. Kevin Mannoia, who has served as chaplain at Azusa Pacific University since 2005. Prior that that, he was dean of APU’s School of Theology and served as president of the National Association of Evangelicals. He is an ordained minister and the author of numerous books.
Top photo: Among the students visiting the Anderson Police Department in February were political science students Michelle Mbok, far left; Solomon Dutton, far right; Kyle Carpenter, second from right; and Anthony Spencer, third from right. Not pictured: Shane Geer, Chloe Lynch, Noah Marquez and Brandon Moss.
Simpson University, founded in 1921, moved to Redding almost 30 years ago and will celebrate its centennial in 2021. In addition to offering 25 majors in its traditional undergraduate program, the university has graduated almost 4,000 North State adults from its ASPIRE degree-completion program, and nearly 3,000 from its School of Education. It has a No. 12-ranked School of Nursing, a seminary, and master’s programs in counseling psychology and organizational leadership.
Simpson is launching new athletics programs in track and field, swimming and diving, women’s wrestling, and men’s volleyball, as well as a bass fishing team. The university is also working to better serve transfer students from community colleges through its commitment to Associate Degree for Transfer agreements, and it is offering new scholarships.