Department of Government and Sociology

In the Department of Government and Sociology, we will lead you on a path of exploration into the public sector— but we also lead you to a path of self-discovery as an active citizen in an ever-evolving world.  

From in depth courses on constitutionalism and public service systems to graduate degrees in public administration and criminal justice— you have endless opportunities to learn from some of the most dedicated and talented faculty at Georgia College. And your time in the programs won’t stop in the classroom. We cultivate a sense of independence and curiosity in our students, which leads to undergraduate research, public service projects and internships.

After graduating from Georgia College and the Department of Government and Sociology, you’ll be equipped with everything you need to not only enter into careers at the international to local levels— but to be a leader in the process. 

Outstanding Sociology Major Receives honorable Mention in COPLAC Sponsored Competition

Breon Haskett recently was awarded Honorable Mention in the David J. Prior Award competition for outstanding student essay on the public liberal arts experience, sponsored by COPLAC.  He received recognition for his essay entitled “Conceit and the Liberal Arts Experience.” The theme of his essay was, “The value of a liberal arts education lies in the sharing of unlike ideas to further the knowledge of all those around us.”

Breon is a senior double major in Sociology and English who will be graduating in December 2016.  He, along with fellow Outstanding Sociology major Dillon Johnstone, also presented research at the Annual Meetings of the Southern Sociological Society in Atlanta on April 14, 2016.  Their paper was “Policy Reframing Racial Projects: A Quantitative Analysis of the Effects Affirmative Action Has on Opinion of Public Policy.” (Breon J. Haskett, Georgia College & State University; Dillon R. Johnstone, Georgia College & State University.)

Breon describes the benefits of studying sociology thusly, “Society is a complex and sometimes scary thing we are all dealing with. I drive to school based on rules made up a hundred years ago on roads built sixty years ago while wearing shoes manufactured just months ago halfway round the world. So much goes on without my say that I'm just supposed to deal with. All the people and time that go into me just getting up, showered, dressed, and sitting in class requires an enormous network of people I have never met and will never meet, and yet I got to class without seeing or talking to anyone. It's creepy. But sociology makes sense of these networks and institutions, how people interact and do what they need to get done. My experience with the sociology program has been that the world and its infinite complexity is that much less confusing. “


Sociology Student Presents at Annual Meetings

Diana Bacallao recently presented her research at the Annual Meetings of the Southern Sociological Society in Atlanta, GA.  Entitled “Student Engagement and Academic Success in a Summer Bridge Program: Exploring the Impact of Parental Education,”  the research explored the hypothesis that students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are able to successfully navigate the admissions process would be more academically engaged and therefore more successful at the end of the program.

Ms. Bacallao also presented her research at the GC Student Research Conference held on April 22, 2016.  Her paper has also been selected to represent Georgia College a the COPLAC Conference to be held on April 23, 2016.  Additionally Diana has been chosen, along with two other students, to receive the outstanding Sociology Major award for 2016.

It was an out of classroom experience which solidified Diana’s belief that she has chosen a field she has come to excel in:  “. . . I think the first time that I realized I kind of knew what I was talking about sociology-wise was in a bar in Salamanca, Spain around 2:30 in the morning.  I walked into a conversation that a couple of Australian acquaintances were having about Aborigines.  It quickly snowballed into a talk about Native Americans, and then African Americans, and then the United States’ education system, and then it may have turned into me holding a seminar about oppression and poverty.  A group discussion followed (seriously) where people from all over the world (seriously) were applying the systems I had just talked about to their own countries. It was surreal, and it wasn’t until 3 hours later on the walk home when the girl I was traveling with was like “Diana, that was awesome” until it really sunk in.” 

Diana will be graduating in May and plans to attend graduate school in Student Affairs at North Carolina State.    She explains her decision making process, “I’ve chosen to pursue a master’s degree in higher education and student affairs. I think that my degree and classes in Sociology are the perfect prerequisite to working with students and institutions on a professional level. Because I am specifically interested in working with at risk students and helping institutions serve and retain them my sociology classes will give me an edge identifying how best to serve students in graduate school and beyond. I’m confident that the research I’ve been involved with for my capstone and the skills I’m learning in my Research Methods class will get me through [my graduate program].”


Political Science student presents at annual meeting

Hillary Hunnings, Political Science and Mass Communications double major presented a paper entitled, "Bystander, Observer, Participant: The United States and Humanitarian Intervention" at the International Studies Association Annual Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia in March.  The research, which was conducted with former GC political science Professor Dr. Jason Rich, examined domestic and international variables affecting patterns of U.S. humanitarian intervention in the world.


Former GC student admitted into Harvard Law School

Atanas Sabev, a former student at Georgia College and a mentee of Dr. Roger Coate has been admitted to Harvard Law School’s LL.M Class of 2017.  A native of Bulgaria, Mr. Sabev attended Georgia College for two semesters.  While here, he served as the Coverdell undergraduate research assistant under Dr. Roger Coate, Paul D. Coverdell Professor of Public Policy.  After returning to Bulgaria, Dr. Coate continued to mentor Mr. Sabev.  He earned a degree in Legal Studies from Sofia University, Sofia, Bulgaria.  Since graduation, he has been employed by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the largest professional services firm in the world.

Congratulations to Atanas and best wishes at Harvard.

Dr. Coate, Ph.D., to give lecture at the University of Nevada, Reno

Dr. Roger A. Coate, Paul D. Coverdell Professor Public Policy will give the Hilliard Endowment Lecture at the University of Nevada April 5th.  The title of his lecture is “The United Nations System at 70: Confronting the Crisis of Global Governance when Leadership Wanes?”  Dr. Coate will reflect on the past seven decades of the UN system and look toward the future, discussing the 2015 report by the Commission on Global Security, Justice, and Governance, entitled “Confronting the Crisis of Global Governance” and whether the suggested reforms can make a real difference.

Professor Coate’s research and teaching interests focus on theory, practice, and public policy related to multilateral relations, international organization, and global governance.  His specific areas of expertise and research interests include leadership and the role of the Unites States in the UN system, international organization reform, the role of civil society in global governance, nonprofit management, public-private partnerships, and U.S. multilateral foreign policy.  He is author or co-author of more than a dozen books and monographs.

Costas Spirou, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology and Public Administration Invited to Join Editorial Board

Dr. Spirou has been invited to join the Editorial Board of the “Urban Affairs Review,” a highly prestigious journal.  It is the official journal of the Urban and Local Politics Section of the American Political Science Association.  Other members of the board include faculty from Colorado, London School of Economics, Tsunghua University, Northwestern, Ohio State, Southern California, Brown, Cornell, University of Warsaw and others.  Dr. Spirou will serve on the board through December 31, 2017.


The Department of Government and Sociology at Georgia College is committed to providing all of its students with an education that offers in-depth study and a breath of experience through our programs.  Our faculty and curriculum focuses on engaging and challenging students to grow both academically and personally as they prepare for careers in their chosen fields or by continuing their studies at the graduate level.   The undergraduate programs include the BA major and minor in Criminal Justice, Political Science and Sociology, and a minor in Anthropology.  At the graduate level we offer two degrees, the Master of Public Administration and the Master of Science in Criminal Justice.  

With 25 dedicated full-time faculty, the department prides itself on promoting a student-centered learning environment in pursuit of intellectual excellence.  As active scholars in their field, our faculty have been recognized with outstanding teaching, research and service awards.  Our programs share a commitment to the highest standards of academic quality and faculty work closely with students as teacher-scholars to advance their goals.  By embracing our liberal arts mission, we strive to create an academic environment that aims to assist the development of life-long and independent learners. 

Our students have opportunities to become involved in undergraduate research, public service projects, and internships.  They learn in and beyond the classroom through civic engagement, study abroad, work on archaeology sites, etc.  Several courses offer students opportunities to work with local citizens and public school students in citizenship and community-based programming.

Once again, welcome to the Department of Government and Sociology and on behalf of the faculty I invite you to contact us with any questions and encourage you to learn more about our work!

Stephanie McClure, Ph.D.
Professor and Acting Chair


Georgia College and State University has been identified as having one of the most affordable online Master¹s degree programs in Public Administration for 2016. 

Editors selected programs from accredited universities and colleges based on graduate tuition prices and fees as published by NCES College Navigator.

Read more here.





Department of Government and Sociology
Arts and Sciences Room 2-03  |  Campus Box 18
Milledgeville, GA 31061
Phone: (478) 445-4562
Fax: (478) 445-5273