Pathways to Success: From Saint Mary's to International Diplomacy, a virtual Homecoming event

Pathways poster

The Political Science Department is proud to announce that former Political Science Major and Honours Student, Isalean Phillip (BA ’16 Political Science, Hons., MA ’19 Gender and Women’s Studies), will be participating in a powerful panel on Pathways to Success: From Saint Mary’s to International Diplomacy with the Honourable Mayann Francis (BA '72 LLD ’12) and Ann-Marie Layne (BA ’94). The panel will take place online at noon on October 12, 2023. Please see the attached poster for details.

Isalean Phillip is currently a Nevis and Saint Kitts Senator. She holds the portfolio of Junior Minister for Youth Empowerment and Social Development, Bender Affairs, Aging and Disabilities. Please see the link: Her Political Science Honours thesis was entitled “What happens when Race and Gender Overlap? Investigating what ‘intersectionality’ means and does,” under the supervision of Dr. Stella Gaon.


What's Happening in Lebanon Event

This event will be free and open to the public.  For registration visit the link: Registration


2023 Honours Thesis Presentations Event

On April 11, 2023 we had our 2023 Honours Thesis Presentations Event on the Unilever Lounge at Saint Mary's University.

Congratulations students!



East Coast Model UN Simulation

Despite record cold temperatures, the Saint Mary’s Model UN Society (SMUMUNS), with the support of the Department of Political Science, hosted the inaugural East Coast Model UN simulation on February 4 and 5, 2023. Opening ceremonies featured guest speaker Michael Eaton, the Executive Director of the National Model UN (NMUN) conference. Some 40 students, representing countries from the five regions recognized by the UN, participated in the day long simulation. Students debated and drafted four resolutions on the topic ‘Safeguarding Human Rights of Persons Displaced by Climate Change’. Manav Khera (BComm) and Pyper Lane (Political Science) served as Secretary General and Deputy Secretary General, and Dr. Marc Doucet assisted as the Faculty Advisor. Naza Yammine (Saint Mary’s), Zoey Phillips (St. FX), and Robbie Hughes (St. FX) were recognized by their peers as ‘Outstanding Delegates’. The organizing committee would like to thank NMUN and Mr. Eaton for the use of the 2023 NMUN GA3 Background Guide. 



Atlantic Provinces Political Science Association Annual Conference 2022

The 2022 Conference of the Atlantic Provinces Political Science Association hosted by our department was a success! We are thankful for all participants, keynote speakers and and special panel presenters for three days of intellectually stimulating discussions and networking. 

Political Science Fall Welcome Event

The Department of Political Science welcomes all students in the program to a casual "Meet & Greet" event at the Gorsebrook Lounge.

Day: Tuesday October 18th, 2022 
Time: 5:30 - 7:00 pm
Place: Gorsebrook Lounge & Pub

Come to meet fellow students and faculty members in Political Science! Enjoy some pizza or a snack!

Drop by for a chat and a slice, and learn more about the program!


The Lucid Vigil: Deconstruction, Desire and the Politics of Critique

Dr. Stella Gaon's new book, The Lucid Vigil: Deconstruction, Desire and the Politics of Critique was published in February of 2019 by Routledge, and was launched on March 22nd, from 1:00-2:30pm, in Atrium 216.  


From Right to Left:

Dr, Marc Doucet, Dr. Lyubov Zhyznomirska , Dr. Stella Gaon and Dr. Edna Keeble

Photo by Karen Asp


Canada’s National Defence within the global context 

Venner + Group

Left to right: Dr. Marc Doucet, Chair of Political Science; Associate Deputy Minister Gordon Venner; Dr. Margaret MacDonald, Dean of Arts; and Political Science Professor Dr. Alexandra Dobrowolsk

  Venner + Student

Venner + lecture1

Venner + lecture2

Venner + lecture3

An undergraduate education can provide a very helpful foundation for careers in federal government, students heard recently from one of Canada’s top defence advisors.

“The things you’re studying here are going to be really important,” said Associate Deputy Minister Gordon Venner of the Department of National Defence. “We’re going to need a lot of people with the right skills.”

Speaking to a packed lecture hall at Saint Mary’s on November 21, Mr. Venner also explained that recruitment is an ongoing priority for National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces. Service personnel and civilian employees are tasked with implementing government decisions related to the defence of Canadian interests at home and abroad.   

An education in political science, public policy, geography, business, international relations, communications, science or environmental studies can be helpful, to name just a few areas, and so are the abilities to speak other languages and a greater understanding of other cultures, he said.   

Mr. Venner’s lecture was mainly focused on the topic, “Understanding Canada’s defence policy within the evolving global security environment”. He was in Halifax to attend the 11th Halifax International Security Forum, but took time out before the conference to speak to students at Saint Mary’s. The lecture was hosted by the Department of Political Science, but was open to students in all disciplines.

Dr. Marc Doucet, Chair of Political Science, said it was a unique opportunity to hear from such a high-level civil servant. 

"It is always valuable for students to hear how the topics discussed in class or course readings, in this case the policy-making process that led to Canada's new defence policy, is described by government officials directly involved," said Dr. Doucet.

Mr. Venner was appointed Associate Deputy Minister in 2017, after several years of serving as Assistant Deputy Minister of Policy for National Defence. Previously, he held a number of senior positions with Global Affairs Canada. His regional areas of responsibility have included the Middle East and North Africa and his work has covered issues related to the G8, APEC and the OECD. Mr. Venner was also Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet for Foreign and Defence Policy in the Privy Council Office. He served as Canadian Ambassador to Iran (2004-2006) and Counsellor at the Canadian Mission to the European Union (1996-2000).

Mr. Venner holds a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Western Ontario.

--   Marla Cranston, Faculty of Arts

Contact us

Faculty of Arts
Department of Political Science
Mailing address:
Saint Mary's University
923 Robie Street
Halifax, NS B3H 3C3