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The Bush School of Government and Public Service is a graduate college of Texas A&M University. The school is named in honor of former US President George H. W. Bush. The school offers graduate degrees in Public Service and Administration and in International Affairs, while also providing certificates in graduate programs that are completed online and through local continuing education opportunities. The Bush School is located adjacent to the George Bush Presidential Library on the West Campus of Texas A&M University.
According to U.S. News & World Report, The Bush School ranks in the top 13 percent of public affairs programs and is ranked 33rd overall among public affairs graduate schools in the United States. The Master in International Affairs degree is one of just 33 member programs recognized by the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs. In 2015, it was ranked as one of the top 25 international relations graduate programs in the world by Foreign Policy. The Master of Public Service and Administration degree is fully accredited by the National Association of Public Affairs and Administration. The Bush School prides itself on offering financial aid to 100% of its full-time students. It is also one of only five graduate schools selected by the Robertson Foundation for the prestigious Robertson Fellowship Scholarship, a full-ride scholarship for students dedicated to government service.
The George Bush Presidential Library was established in 1997 on 90 acres (36 ha; 0.14 sq mi) of land donated by Texas A&M at the western edge of the campus. At that time, The George Bush School of Government and Public Service was established to coincide with the opening of the library. While the school was officially launched in 1997, it became an independent college within the university in 2000. The school has established three research institutes on campus, to conduct public policy-oriented research to assist domestic and global economies. These institutes include the Institute for Science, Technology and Public Policy; the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs; and the Mosbacher Institute for Trade, Economics, and Public Policy.
The Bush School was named in honor of former US President George H. W. Bush. He has been involved in providing direction in the organization by helping bring noted professors, as well as individuals from the public and private sectors to the campus. Visitors have included Ban Ki-moon, Mikhail Gorbachev, Ted Kennedy, Barack Obama, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Helmut Kohl, Peter Orszag, Mitt Romney, Mike Krzyzewski, Dick Cheney, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Karl Rove, Andrew Card, Dan Quayle, Antonin Scalia, Ryan Crocker, Michael Mullen, and Jiang Zemin.
The Bush School offers a Master of Public Service and Administration degree with the option to pursue either the Public Policy Analysis track, the Non-Profit Management track, or the Public Management track. The Master of Public Service and Administration degree program offers five areas of concentration, encompassing degrees in education policy, state government/local government, security policy/management, energy, environment, technology policy/management; and health policy/management. Students also have the option to create their own specialized concentration within any track.
The Master of International Affairs offers the option to pursue the National Security and Diplomacy or the International Development and Economic Policy track. The degree program offers eight concentrations, including US diplomacy, defense policy, homeland security, international economics and development, international politics, and transfer pricing. Additionally, all students in this department are required to pass a foreign language in order to graduate/
All students in both programs also complete a group capstone project during their final year of studies. Capstone clients have included the U.S. Department of State, World Bank, Department of Defense, various intelligence agencies, the Brazos Valley Council of Governments, the Houston Center of Literacy, the Texas Railroad Commission, among many others.
Students are encouraged to pursue internships or language immersions during the summer between their first and second year of study. In the past, students have interned at such organizations as USAID, Cotton Council International, Deutsche Welle, the U.S. Mission the United Nations, the Atlantic Council, CNN, the U.S. State Department, the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Senate, and many others.
The Institute for Science, Technology and Public Policy was initially established as the Center for Public Leadership Studies (CPLS). As The Bush School's academic programs continued to grow, the educational portion of CPLS transitioned to an institute in fall 2000. The Institute for Science, Technology and Public Policy focuses on interdisciplinary research, development, implementation, and dissemination of the results of studies within the Texas A&M University System, as well as domestically and throughout the world. The current director of ISTPP is Dr. Kent Portney.
The Institute examines state, federal, and international public policy issues, while also reviewing political and societal concerns encompassing policies governing environmental and natural resources, health care, infrastructure and the built environment, and developing and recognizing emerging technologies. Since 2000, the Institute has attracted over $15 million in competitive funding from federal and state agencies and has partnered with researchers from US and international universities, government agencies, and research centers.
The Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs was established in 2007, named in honor of Brent Scowcroft, retired US Air Force Lieutenant General and National Security Advisor for Presidents Gerald Ford and George H. W. Bush. The Institute focuses on assessing, addressing, and presenting policy-oriented research on international affairs. They support the school through hosting educational conferences and providing opportunities for researchers to access the Bush Library. The current director of the Scowcroft Institute is Andrew Natsios, former USAID director.
In March 2017, Scowcroft head professor Andrew Natsios along with other researchers wrote a Scowcroft Institute white paper, “The Growing Threats of Pandemics: Enhancing Domestic and International Biosecurity." It called for a greater sense of urgency from the dozens of government leaders whose jobs pertain to international health security and biodefense. Natsios said, “The growing threat of emerging infectious diseases with pandemic potential, as well as the real threat of bioterrorism, demand more focused leadership attention to overcome barriers to real progress.”
In order to maintain the highest degree of safety for public health, the white paper called for consolidated leadership and a plan supported by a suitable budget and accountability, mirroring the Congress-approved pandemic influenza emergency supplemental request of 2005, which strengthened preparation for health crises. In presenting a choice between attacking disease outbreaks at their sources or simply waiting to take action until the problem reaches the shores of the United States, Natsios and the Institute advocate for a proactive plan of international cooperation. Natsios said, “Despite the hard work of many in public health, emergency management and foreign assistance… the United States and the international community are not prepared and we remain vulnerable.” The Scowcroft Institute asserts that a lack of meaningful action on biosecurity is a grave mistake.
The Mosbacher Institute for Trade, Economics, and Public Policy, was established in October 2009 in honor of Robert Mosbacher, who had served as the US Secretary of Commerce during George H. W. Bush's presidency. The organization performs research to offer solutions in policy and economic challenges prevalent both domestically and throughout the world. The current director of the Mosbacher Institute is Dr. Lori Taylor.
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