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Dr. Joseph Melusky

  • Joseph Melusky Profile Image

    Position: Professor of Political Science Director, Saint Francis University Center for the Study of Government and Law Coordinator of Political Science and Public Administration/Government Service

    Department: History and Political Science

    Office: Scotus 316B

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    About Dr. Joseph Melusky


    • B.A., West Chester University of Pennsylvania
    • M.A., Ph.D., University of Delaware
    • Post‑Doctoral Studies, University of Michigan and University of Delaware


    • Academic Profile
    • Professional Profile
    • Publications
    • Honors & Awards
    • Community Involvement
    Academic Profile

    Courses Taught:

    • PLSC 102: American National Government
    • PLSC 112: The Road to the White House
    • PLSC 201: Introduction to Research Methods
    • PLSC 301: Constitutional Law
    • PLSC 303: The American Presidency
    • PLSC 304: State and Local Government
    • PLSC 305: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties
    • PLSC 313 Ethics and Public Policy
    • PLSC 314: Public Administration
    • PLSC 398/399: Political Science Internship Supervision
    • PLSC 499: Seminar in Research Techniques
    • Additional Courses: Introduction to Political Science, Legislative Process, Organizational Theory, Political Behavior, Political Theory I and II, The Bill of Rights, Examining the U.S. Constitution, John Grisham and the American Legal System, and Landmark Cases of Modern Ethics

    Administrative Leadership

    • Interim Vice President for Academic Affairs, Saint Francis University (2005-2006)
    • Chair and Co-Chair, Strategic Planning Task Force, Saint Francis University (2005-2006)
    • Chair, Education Department, Saint Francis University (2007-2008)
    • Chair, Department of History and Political Science, Saint Francis College/University (1992-2005)
    • Director, Saint Francis University Center for the Study of Government and Law (2006-present)
    • Coordinator, Political Science and Public Administration/Government Services Programs, SFC/SFU (1981-1982; 1985-1992; 2006-present)
    • Director of Internship Program in Political Science and Public Administration, Saint Francis College/University (1982-present)
    • Director, Pre-Law Program, Saint Francis College/University (1980-present)
    • Dean of General Education, Saint Francis College (1993-1994)
    • Co-Chair, General Education Committee, SFC (1993-1994)
    • Co-Chair, Task Force on General Education, SFC (1991-1993)
    • President, SFC Faculty Senate (1985-1986 and 1986-1987), Vice-President (1984-1985, 1990-1992)
    • Extensive service on numerous university committees
    Professional Profile

    Post Doctoral Work

    • Visiting Scholar at the University of Delaware (1987‑1988 and 1995)
    • Visiting Scholar at Widener University School of Law (1995)
    • Academic Leadership Institute, Carnegie Mellon University (1991)
    • Inter‑University Consortium for Political and Social Research, University of Michigan (1987)
    • Faculty Academy, The Pennsylvania State University School of Information Sciences and Technology: "Building Bridges for eLearning" (2001)
    • NSF Chautauqua Short Courses, "Science and Pseudoscience: A Primer in Critical Thinking" Temple University (2002); "Using Computer Networks," Temple University (1995)
    • Asheville Institute on General Education, Association of American Colleges (1992)

    Professional Leadership

    • President, Northeastern Political Science Association (2006)
    • Vice-President, Northeastern Political Science Association (2005); Program Chair for 2005 NPSA Conference (November 17-19, 2005, Philadelphia, PA); Second Vice-President, NPSA (2004); Third Vice-President, NPSA (2004)
    • Executive Director, Northeastern Political Science Association (1994-1998)
    • Director of Employment Services, Northeastern Political Science Association (1985-present)
    • President, Pennsylvania Political Science Association (2004 -2006 and 1996-1998); Past President, PPSA (2006-2008 and 1998-2000); Acting President, Vice-President, and Program Chair, PPSA (2003-2004); Vice-President and Program Chair, PPSA (2002-2003 and 1994-1996); Second Vice-President, PPSA (2000-2002 and 1992-1994); Treasurer, PPSA (2000-2002); Editor, Pennsylvania Political Scientist, PPSA (1991-1994)
    • Governing Board Member, Pennsylvania Humanities Council (1996-2002)
    • Chair, PHC Development and Government Relations Committee (1999-2000)
    • Advisory Board Member, Institute for Experiential Education, Washington, D.C. (1996-present)
    • Consultant and External Reviewer for Programs at Caldwell College (2001), Franciscan University at Steubenville (1998), Juniata College (1998), Marywood College (1996), and Mansfield University (1990)

    Professional Memberships, Offices and Positions

    • Northeastern Political Science Association; Past-President; President (2006); Vice President (2005); Program Chair for 2005 NPSA Conference; Second Vice President (2004); Third Vice President (2003); Executive Director (1994‑1998); Coordinator of Employment Services (1985‑present)
    • Pennsylvania Political Science Association; Past President; President (2004-2006 and 1996‑1998); Acting President (2003‑2004); Vice President (2002-2004 and 1994‑1996); Second Vice President (1992‑1994); Treasurer (2000‑2002); Member of Executive Council; Editor, PA Political Scientist (1991‑1994)
    • American Political Science Association; former member of Executive Committee of Organized Section on Internships & Experiential Education
    • Pennsylvania Humanities Council, Governing Board Member (1999-2002 and 1996‑1999)
    • Institute for Experiential Education, Advisory Board Member, Washington, D.C. (1996‑present)
    • Judge of Elections, Blair Township, East Hollidaysburg District, Blair County, Pennsylvania (elected 1997; re‑elected 2001 and 2005)
    • Blair County Democratic Committee (1985‑1990 and 2005-present)
    • Blair County Committee for the Bicentennial Celebration of the U.S.Constitution (1986‑1987)


    • The Capital Punishment Debate, with Keith Pesto, Greenwood Press, forthcoming in 2008.
    • The Contemporary Constitution: Modern Interpretations, Krieger Publishing Company, Inc., 2006.
    • Cruel and Unusual Punishment, with Keith Pesto, ABC‑CLIO, 2003. The book was part of "America's Freedoms" Series. Selected by Pennsylvania School Librarian Association as one of the 2004 Top Forty Nonfiction Titles.
    • The American Political System: An Owner's Manual, McGraw‑Hill, 2000.
    • The Bill of Rights: Our Written Legacy, Krieger Publishing Co., Inc., 1993.
    • To Preserve These Rights: The Bill of Rights 1791‑1991, Pennsylvania Humanities Council, 1991.
    • The Constitution: Our Written Legacy, Krieger Publishing Co., Inc., 1991.

    Selected Articles

    • The Fifties in America. Salem Press (2005), article on Sweatt vs. Painter.
    • "Simulating a Mock National Convention." Social Science Perspectives Journal, Volume 21, Number 2 (2002) and The National Social Sciences Journal, Volume 20, Number 2 (2003).
    • "Coming to America: Measuring Student Opinions on Immigration Reform." Social Sciences Perspectives Journal and The National Social Sciences Journal, Volume 15, Number 2 (2001).
    • "'Dewey Defeats Truman': Lessons in Public Opinion Polling." Social Sciences Perspectives Journal (2000); also published in the NSSA's The National Social Science Journal, Volume 15, Number 1 (2000).
    • The Supreme Court: A Reference Work. Salem Press (2000), article on Justice John Paul Stevens.
    • The Sixties in America. Salem Press (March 1999), article on Katzenbach v. McClung (1964).
    • Encyclopedia of North American History. Salem Press (1999), article on the Articles of Confederation.
    • Ready Reference: Censorship. Salem Press (1997), articles on Miller v. California (1973) and Texas v. Johnson (1989).
    • American Justice Reference Series. Salem Press (1996), articles on Barron v. Baltimore (1833), Barenblatt v. United States (1959), Rostker v. Goldberg (1981), Akron v. Akron Center for Reproductive Health (1983), Texas v. JohnsonUnited States v. Eichman (1990), the Ninth Amendment, and the Federal Court System. (1989),
    • "1995 PPSA Survey of Departments," Co‑author, Pennsylvania Political Scientist (1996).
    • "Taking Connections Seriously: The New and Improved SFC General Education Program" Co‑author. Delivered at the conference of the Association for General and Liberal Studies, Daytona Beach, Florida, October 25, 1996. Subsequently published in ERIC database.
    • Book review of Melvin Urofsky's, The Supreme Court Justices: A Biographical Dictionary,
    • Journal of American History (March 1996).
    • Book review of A.W. Brian Simpson's, Leading Cases in the Common Law
    • CHOICE. 
    • Book review of Calvin Massey's, Silent Rights: The Ninth Amendment and the Constitution's Unenumerated Rights, CHOICE (February 1996).
    • "How Saint Francis University Revised Its General Education Program in Just Nine Short Years" Co‑author, Delivered at the 1995 conference of the Association for General and Liberal Studies, San Antonio, TX, October 13, 1995. A revised version of this paper, "Taking Process Seriously: How SFC Revised Its General Education Program," was published in Perspectives (Fall 1996).
    • Book review of Paul Haskell Zernicke's, Pitching the Presidency: How Presidents Depict the Office, CHOICE (April 1995).
    • Book review of Martin Levin and Mary Bryna Sanger's, Making Government Work: How Entrepreneurial Executives Turn Bright Ideas into Real Results, CHOICE (December 1994).
    • "Survey of Pennsylvania Delegates to the 1992 National Party Conventions," Co‑author, Pennsylvania Political Scientist (Vol. 5, 1994).
    • Book review of David Schoenbrod's, Power Without Responsibility: How Congress Abuses the People Through Delegation, CHOICE (April 1994).
    • "1992‑1993 PPSA Survey of Departments" Co‑Author, Pennsylvania Political Scientist (vol. 4, 1993).
    • Book Review of Charles S. Bullock and Loch K. Johnson's, Runoff Elections in the United States, CHOICE (March 1993).
    • "The Democratic and Republican National Conventions: A Challenge for Experiential Education," co‑author, Experiential Education (1993).
    • "Library Resources: A Political Science Worksheet," Teaching Methods (vol. 1, 1993).
    • Book Review of Richard H. King's, Civil Rights and the Idea of Freedom, CHOICE (November 1992).
    • Book Review of Lee Bollinger's, Images of a Free Press, CHOICE (February 1992).
    • "Using a Visit by a Guest Speaker to Teach about Research Techniques in the Social Sciences" Co‑author, Delivered at the 1991 meeting of the National Social Science Association, Memphis, TN, November 14‑16, 1991. Social Science Perspectives Journal, Volume 6, Number 2 (1991).
    • Book Review of Herman Belz's, Equality Transformed: A Quarter Century of Affirmative Action, CHOICE (October 1991).
    • Book Review of Ellen Alderman and Caroline Kennedy's, In Our Defense: The Bill of Rights in Action, CHOICE (June, 1991).
    • "1990‑1991 PPSA Survey of Departments" Co‑author, Pennsylvania Political Scientist (1991)
    • Book Review of Peter Irons', The Courage of Their Convictions: Sixteen Americans Who Fought Their Way to the Supreme Court, Pennsylvania Humanities (Spring 1990)
    • Pre‑Revision Book Reviewer of O'Connor, Ingersoll, and Pecorella's Politics and Structures: Essentials of American National Government, for Brooks/Cole Publishing Co. (December 1987).
    • "Introducing Gramm‑Rudman" Saint Francis University (a quarterly magazine), Volume 1, Number 3 (Spring 1986).
    • "Staging a Mock National Party Convention: The Saint Francis University Model" Teaching Politics, Volume 15, Number 2, May 1986.
    • "Reagan II: The Sequel," Mid‑Eastern Association of Educational Opportunity Program Personnel Newsletter, Volume XII, Number 1 (December 1984).
    • Justice John Paul Stevens' Equal Protection Analysis.
    • Ann Arbor, Michigan: University Microfilms International, 1984 (Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Delaware, 1983).
    • "A Comparative Analysis of the Regional Strength of Major Party Presidential Candidates in 1976 and 1980: Some Tactical Prescriptions for 1984 in View of Electoral Vote Shifts"
    • Presidential Studies Quarterly, Volume XIII, Number 3 (Summer 1983).
    • "An Electoral College Fable: How the Carter‑Ford Election Might Have Made Ronald Reagan President in 1976" Presidential Studies Quarterly, Volume XI, Number 3, (Summer 1981).
    • What's Happening in Congress: An Analysis of Ideological Shifts Which Occurred During the 1974 Congressional Elections and Which Were Substantially Maintained During the 1976 Elections (M.A. Thesis, University of Delaware, 1978).
    Honors & Awards
    • Recipient of the "Swatsworth Faculty Merit Award" (2001, 1990)
    • Recipient of the Saint Francis University National Alumni Association's "Distinguished Faculty Award" (1995)
    • Recognized for service to Northeastern Political Science Association (1997)
    • Selected for "Who's Who Among America's Teachers" (2006, 2004, 2002, 2000, 1998, and 1996).
    • Nominated by SFU Students for “Advisor of the Year” Award (2006-2007)
    • Finalist for “Sears-Roebuck Foundation Distinguished Faculty Award” (1991, 1990)
    • Recipient of the "Outstanding Faculty Citation" (1983)
    • Initiated into National History Honor Society, Phi Alpha Theta (1995), the National Political Science Honor Society, Pi Sigma Alpha (1976), and the National Social Science Honor Society, Pi Gamma Mu (1974).
    • Additional recognition includes “Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals in Education” (2006-2007), “Who’s Who of Executives and Professionals” (2005), "Contemporary Authors" (2005), "Madison's Who's Who" (2005), "Who's Who in America" (2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001), "Who's Who of Professionals (2004), "Who's Who in the World" (2004, 1997), "America's Registry of Outstanding Professionals" (2001‑2002), "Lexington's Who's Who" (2000/2001 Millennium Edition of the Registry), "Directory of American Scholars" (2000), "2000 Outstanding Scholars of the 20th Century" (2000), "Dictionary of International Biography" (1999), "International Man of the Year" nominee (1998/1999), "Twentieth Century Award for Achievement" (1999), "Honored Member, Strathmere's Who's Who" (1998‑1999), "2000 Outstanding People of the 20th Century" nominee (1999, 1998), "Who's Who in the East" (1999‑2000, 1996‑1997), "Outstanding Young Men of America" (1984).
    Community Involvement

    Additional Community Service

    • Judge, “We the People: Pennsylvania Statewide Competition,” Freedoms Foundation, Valley Forge, PA (2008, 2006)
    • Judge, “We the People: Pennsylvania Statewide Competition” National Constitution Center, Philadelphia, PA (2004, 2005).
    • Judge, “We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution, Project Citizen,” Dickinson College (2003, 2002, 2001)
    • Judge, "PA American Legion High School Oratorical Contest on the U.S. Constitution" (2000, 1995, 1993, 1992, 1991)
    • Soccer Coach, Hollidaysburg Area Youth Soccer Association, PA West Hollidaysburg Club Team, AYSO, and Indoor Soccer Leagues and Tournaments (2001-present)
    • Softball Coach, Hollidaysburg Area Softball League (2003-2006)
    • Pony League Baseball Coach, Hollidaysburg Area Baseball League (2002‑2004)
    • Little League Baseball Coach, Hollidaysburg Area Baseball League (2001)
    • Basketball Coach, Hollidaysburg Area School District Elementary Program, Grades 3‑6 (1997-2000)

    Why should students study political science?

    We are citizens, not “subjects.” It is important to study politics to prepare ourselves for the responsibilities of active and informed citizenship. In Jefferson’s words, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free . . . it expects what never was and never will be.”