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Courtney Broscious - Associate Professor of Political Science, Political Science, Philosophy and Geography

Ph.D., Temple University


Courtney Broscious

How did you come to Eastern?

“I attended a small liberal arts college as an undergraduate and recognized the way that my education prepared me for the work I did in public policy research and consulting after graduate school. When I made the decision to move back into higher education in 2015, I was looking for a public liberal arts university. I believe that institutions of higher education should be agents of social mobility and should provide an education that encourages students to develop flexible skillsets that can be applied in multiple settings. I also believe that providing opportunities for students to practically apply their academics is essential for preparedness for life after graduation. Eastern stood out to me as a place that reflected my beliefs about higher education.”

What is your favorite course to teach?

“If I had to pick my favorites, I would say constitutional law and criminal justice policy. In constitutional law, my courses typically observe the Connecticut Supreme Court so that we can see in person cases that pose constitutional questions and we also build skills that culminate in a moot court. Students take on the role of a justice or attorney and we argue a case that is currently before the U.S. Supreme Court. Criminal justice policy is another favorite. In this class I get to bring back what I have seen around the nation and support students in identifying strategies to effect change in our criminal justice system.”

What are your research interests?

“I am working on a few projects right now that I am really excited about. I have continued work in policy consultation with the National Center for State Courts and am working on an evaluation and training project with adult treatment courts in West Virginia. I am also working on a project with colleagues from Rowan University that focuses on understanding how individuals’ perceptions of the deservingness of criminal offenders impact their evaluation of sentences handed down by the courts. This project utilizes an online survey experiment to better understand how we distinguish those who we believe are deserving of a second chance from those we do not believe are deserving.”

What do you enjoy most about teaching at Eastern?

“Our students and colleagues. The students at Eastern are curious and interested, kind to each other and community minded. Our colleagues are supportive of each other and are always seeking ways to improve their courses. I really appreciate the conversations we have about teaching, and I have come up with so many great ideas to improve my classes because of them.”

What is your teaching philosophy?

“I plan my courses so that students can engage in active learning that is based on real-world scenarios. I also look for opportunities to bring students outside of the classroom. My favorite experiences with students have centered around observing the Connecticut Supreme Court or participating as a class in events that are relevant to our course curriculum, such as visiting the art gallery, or attending a university hour talk that is relevant to our course curriculum.”

I believe that institutions of higher education should be agents of social mobility and should provide an education that encourages students to develop flexible skillsets that can be applied in multiple settings.

Courtney Broscious talking with students during class

Memorable moments at Eastern?

“Every time I take students to observe the Connecticut Supreme Court and then discuss what we observed over lunch, I learn a lot about our students and about state level litigation. I have always enjoyed the times when I have been able to accompany students to research conferences. I have traveled to Washington, D.C., Austin, Philadelphia and Boston with students.”

Career advice to students.

“My biggest piece of career advice is to recognize the value of understanding processes. Our field is primarily focused on understanding how we make decisions, distribute resources, implement new ideas and solve problems. This skillset is highly transferable and highly desirable in both the workplace and in life. Use that skillset to build the career that you want.”

Life advice to graduates.

“Life is not a linear process. Don’t always be in a hurry to get to the next milestone, because you never know what types of opportunities you will miss in the present.”