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2016 Leaders in Higher Education

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Texas A&M University, Bush School of Government and Public Service

Program on Women, Peace, and Security

Research has shown that national security policies and peace processes are more effective, just, and lasting when they engage women’s voices and view policy in an inclusive way.

“A country’s levels of violence against women are a better predictor of national security than are its levels of wealth or democracy,” says Valerie Hudson, professor and George H.W. Bush Chair at the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University (TAMU). “Whether we’re talking about food security, economic prosperity, health and disease, demographic pressures, governance issues, or even state conflict, what’s going on with women affects the security of the nation.”

Hudson, a renowned expert on international security and gender analysis, is director of TAMU’s Program on Women, Peace, and Security (WPS). Established in 2015, the program focuses on gender analysis as it relates to international affairs. (For details, see http://bush.tamu.edu/wps.)

“A country’s levels of violence against women are a better predictor of national security than are its levels of wealth or democracy.” –Valerie Hudson, Professor, Bush School of Government and Public Service, Texas A&M University

Students in the Bush School’s Master of International Affairs (MIA) program enroll in either of two policy tracks: national security and diplomacy; or international development and economic policy. In addition, they select two or more concentrations, and many choose the WPS program as one of their concentrations.

“We are training our students to become part of the next generation of global policymakers who are wearing gender lenses,” says Hudson. The U.S. Department of State has been supporting efforts to integrate women’s views and perspectives into diplomatic, security, and development efforts. Hudson sees rising demand for professionals with gender analysis skills at the Department of State, Department of Defense, USAID, and the Executive Branch, as well as the private and nonprofit sectors.

To help students prepare for such roles, the WPS program is looking forward to offering capstone projects, in which students will perform research for a client. Students may also take part in research endeavors such as The WomanStats Project, which is the research arm of the WPS program. Currently funded through the Minerva Initiative of the U.S. Department of Defense, the project is examining marriage patterns, marriage market obstruction, and national security. The work is part of a larger research agenda investigating the relationship between the security, situation, and status of women and the security of the states in which they live.

The highly ranked Bush School of Government and Public Service is a member of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (APSIA) and is one of the nation’s leading graduate schools of public affairs. The Bush School prides itself on keeping its academic programs affordable and not burdening students with expensive school loans and debt. Bush School Scholarships support a majority of students, and the school grants non-resident tuition waivers to its out-of-state students.

Master’s Degrees offered: See Program Directory