Academic Catalog 2021-2022

Barbara Jordan - Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs

An extensive set of curricular offerings is provided through the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs (BJML) that includes undergraduate courses in Administration of Justice (AJ), Political Science (POLS), Public Affairs (PA), and Emergency Management and Homeland Security (EMHS).

From these offerings, students can earn up to four undergraduate degrees:

At the graduate level, degrees are offered as follows:

In addition to course and degree offerings, students with majors in other departments may declare minors in the undergraduate disciplines offered through this School:

  • Administration of Justice,
  • Political Science,
  • Public Affairs,
  • Pre-Law Studies,
  • Emergency Management and Homeland Security,
  • Forensic Science,
  • Military Science,
  • Air Force Leadership, and
  • Naval Science

Faculty and staff are housed on the fourth floor of the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs Building.

The Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs occupies a 4-story facility with “smart” classrooms and the latest in multimedia technology.  This first-class facility houses:

  • a state-of-the-art Survey Research Laboratory,
  • a Forensic Laboratory,
  • a Government Decision-making Laboratory (used for legislative and judicial simulations),
  • a cutting-edge Geographic Information System (GIS) Laboratory that provides 3D modeling resources, and
  • a Site Design Laboratory.

The facility also houses the Barbara Jordan Institute, a public policy institute dedicated to finding policy solutions to the many challenges facing urban communities at the local, regional, national and global level, and to advancing civic engagement.

Referral should be made to the Graduate School Bulletin of Texas Southern University for detailed information on the School’s graduate degree programs. A summary of the degrees and programs, by name, appears in the chart below:

The School is administratively organized with a Dean who is assisted by an Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and support staff. Administrative offices are located on the fourth floor of the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs Building.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs is to serve as an urban-focused community of learning dedicated to educating professionals who will plan and administer environmentally healthy and sustainable communities at the local, state, national, and international levels of society.

Students in the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs who successfully complete their degree programs become well versed in the theories, concepts, and practical procedures of the challenging world of public policy making and administration of justice. Their majors help prepare them for effective participation in government, non-governmental organizations, and private sector careers. An excellent background is also provided for students interested in pursuing careers in the legal profession as well as in a wide variety of graduate and professional school programs.

General School Policies

Students wishing to pursue one of the three undergraduate degrees offered through the School must first gain admission to the University, must satisfy all university application requirements, and must petition the School for admission. In petitioning, students must have an earned overall GPA of 2.00 or better and have completed the following four courses with grades of “C” or better (grades of “C-” are unacceptable):

POLS 2305American Government3
POLS 2306Texas Government3
ENGL 1301Freshman English I3
ENGL 1302Freshman English II3

Once admitted to the School, students are each assigned an official advisor who must approve all class schedules. Students must keep the School Office informed of current addresses and telephone numbers up to graduation. Students must also retain a minimum overall GPA of 2.00 and fulfill all prerequisites for required courses prior to scheduling them to remain in good standing in the School. Students failing to meet prerequisites for courses will be withdrawn, administratively, from them. Students are also cautioned that transfer credits will be accepted for required courses only if grades of “C” or better have been earned (grades of “C-” are unacceptable).

Good Academic Standing

Good academic standing constitutes maintaining a minimum cumulative GPA set by the University as referenced under the academic regulations described in chapter two of this document.

Advising

All students are assigned an academic advisor who will assist them with academic planning and learning about career options that relate to their programs. During each registration period, students and their advisors select courses consistent with the overall degree objectives. With their advisors, students learn to explore academic interests, to recognize academic strengths, and to identify resources to address weaknesses.

Student Support Services

The Office of Student Support Services is available to all students to help with questions about admissions, academic majors and minors, course requirements, career and degree plans, and other student related matters. It is to assists students with identifying faculty advisors and mentors. This office also refers students to other campus offices for assistance in academic, personal, and career counseling initiatives; academic skill development and financial aid.

Student Organizations

Student organizations are an integral part of student life at Texas Southern University. Five program-related student organizations operate in the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs at the undergraduate level. Three are open to all students in the School. They are the Administration of Justice Club, the Political Science Club, and the Public Affairs Club. The other two are national honor societies: Alpha Phi Sigma, the Criminal Justice Honor Society, and Pi Sigma Alpha, the National Political Science Honor Society.

Accreditation

All programs in the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs are accredited by Commission on College of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Right to Modify

The University reserves the right to change, without prior notice, any policy or procedure, tuition or fee, curricular requirements, or any other information found in this bulletin. The information contained in this bulletin is considered to be descriptive in nature and not contractual. It is recommended that students, faculty, and staff refer to the most current academic policies and procedures.

Description of Programs in the School

The Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs, named for two of Houston’s most distinguished public servants, is an outstanding undergraduate program at one of the nation’s largest Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The unique urban mission of Texas Southern University and its location in the heart of Houston make it the perfect vantage point to develop a foundation of academic status. The University is located in the city’s historic Third Ward and the entire metropolitan region offers an unparalleled urban laboratory for students to learn.

The facility also houses the Barbara Jordan Institute, a public policy institute dedicated to finding policy solutions to the many challenges facing urban communities at the local, regional, national and global level, and to advancing civic engagement.

The Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs has a reputation as a comprehensive center for sound academic research. Administration of Justice scholars focus on:

  • the correlates of crime,
  • police violence,
  • terrorism,
  • ethics,
  • environmental justice,
  • the interplay of race and crime, and
  • the various legal and justice systems.

Political Science scholars focus on:

  • public opinion and political attitudes,
  • political participation,
  • African-American politics,
  • race and politics,
  • religion and politics,
  • race and governance,
  • policy studies,
  • leadership,
  • E-government,
  • emergency management, and
  • homeland security.

Scholars in Urban Planning and Environmental Policy focus on:

  • urban transportation,
  • housing and community development,
  • environmental racism,
  • Diaspora studies,
  • environmental planning,
  • economic development and the fiscal responsibility of urban governments,
  • sustainability, and
  • an array of environmental issues and conditions.

The Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs has established strategic partnerships with numerous public and private sector entities. These partnerships offer our students unique opportunities to gain hands-on skills and establish contacts and references for the future.

Requirements for the B.S. in Administration of Justice, the B.A. in Political Science, the B.S. in Public Affairs, and the B.S. in Emergency Management and Homeland Security are specified, in detail, below within the department descriptions. As first-time degree seekers, AJ, POLS, and PA students are required to declare a minor in a second academic discipline either through the School or through a different college or school for graduation.  Only majors in Emergency Management and Homeland Security are exempt from declaring a minor.  Grades of “C” or better (grades of “C-” are unacceptable) must be earned in all major and minor courses required for graduation. Additionally, in selecting minors, students should seek detailed advisement from their designated advisors because the selection of a minor having representative courses in the core curriculum for the degree of choice could impact the total number of credits required. In no case will students qualify for graduation at the undergraduate level with fewer than 120 semester credit hours satisfactorily completed.  At the beginning of the senior year, majors should have their overall transcripts and records evaluated by their advisor to verify their status with regard to graduation. An exit examination is required of all graduating seniors.