Why Aid Remains Out of Reach for Some Rohingya Refugees

Ashvina Patel, a PhD candidate at SMU’s Department of Anthropology,  wrote a piece for Sapiens explaining how healthcare eludes many Rohingya refugees in India despite the refugees having free access via the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees UNHCR. Patel spent 11 months with the Rohingya community in India for her research.

“The UNHCR does a lot of good, but the organization could do a better job addressing challenges refugees face in accessing the services to which they are permitted,” Patel wrote.

Read her essay here.

Center Spotlight | Victoria Farrar-Myers

center spotlight victoria farrar myers
Victoria Farrar-Myers with her son in her chair at the Arlington City Council chambers.

This month’s spotlight is with Tower Scholars Program Director Victoria Farrar-Myers. Victoria sits on Arlington’s City Council and teaches classes within the Tower Scholars Program on public policy. Her research focuses on the democratic process and the separation of powers. We sat down with her to see what it’s like to wear two hats–one as a policymaker and another as a professor.

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Darab Ganji Calls on Trump to Support Freedom Movement in Iran

Tower Center Board Member and political economist Darab Ganji wrote an op-ed for the Dallas Morning News after President Trump announced the U.S. would leave the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, colloquially known as the Iran Nuclear Deal. Ganji opens his piece writing the decision was “a bold move that could be extremely positive or potentially disastrous for the civilized world.”

Read the article.

Student Perspective | President Trump, NAFTA and the Future of US Trade Policy

A failure to adjustThe SMU Tower Center Sun & Star Program hosted the conversation “President Trump, NAFTA and the Future of US Trade Policy” featuring Edward Alden, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, April 27. HCM Tower Scholar Visakh Madathil wrote about what he learned at the lecture in his essay below, “A Failure to Adjust.”

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Mattew Wilson Comments on President Trump’s NRA Speech

Tower Center Senior Fellow Matthew Wilson was interviewed by  BBC Weekend about President Trump’s comments on gun law at the NRA convention in Dallas last week. Wilson says he was in no way surprised by the status quo tone of President Trump’s NRA-rallying speech, even though President Trump had suggested that he was open to tightening gun laws after the Parkland mass shooting.

“I think the gun debate is, despite all of the activism surrounding it and all of the surge of student sentiment following the Parkland shooting, I think the gun debate in America is about where it’s been for some time” Wilson said.

Listen to the interview.

Center Spotlight | Jesus Canas

center spotlight jesus canasFor this month’s spotlight the SMU Tower Center interviewed Fellow Jesus Canas, a senior business economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Canas analyzes regional economic growth, specializing on the border economy. He talked to us about the NAFTA renegotiation and the looming presidential election in Mexico.

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Event Recap | The Year of the Woman 2.0

year of the woman
Tower Center Senior Fellow Victoria Farrar-Myers introduces Victoria DeFrancesco-Soto April 23.

The SMU Tower Center hosted Dr. Victoria DeFrancesco-Soto, lecturer at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, to discuss her insights regarding the second flood of female candidates–Year of the Woman 2.0–and what this means for the future of political parity in the U.S.

Women were at the forefront of the 2016 presidential election not only with Hillary Clinton as the first female candidate of a major party, but also because of her opponent’s history of mistreatment toward women. The release of the Access Hollywood tapes made the issue viral. Candidate Trump responded to the uproar by bringing women who accused Bill Clinton of harassment back into the spotlight.

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Associate Ed Rincón | “Unconscious Bias at Starbucks? I don’t think so.”

Tower Center Associate Edward T. Rincón wrote an opinion piece for The Culture of Research blog about the recent incident involving two black men at a Philadelphia Starbucks. Rincón argues that the manager who called the police on these innocent men was not acting due to an unconscious bias, but due to a conscious one.

Read his full piece here.