Ryan Daugherty graduated from Anderson University in 2013 with a bachelor of science in political science and economics. Daugherty currently attends Kansas University and is one of the few political science graduates from AU to continue on to a doctoral program. Daugherty was awarded a full ride to KU’s program to study the politics of Latin American economies.
As he considers both graduate school and his future career, Daugherty said he feels well prepared by AU. AU’s department of history and political science works to equip students for intelligent and active citizenship, but Daugherty’s professors saw unique qualities in him. “Ryan's leadership ability is much higher than most graduates,” said Dr. Daniel Allen, assistant professor of political science.
Allen was not the only professor to see potential in Daugherty. Dr. Michael Frank, professor of political science, taught Daugherty in many classes. “It was clear to me that Ryan was a hard-working and conscientious student I could trust,” said Frank. “Ryan was engaged with the material and was willing to talk extensively about it.”
Daugherty’s passion for Latin America stirred when he traveled to Guatemala on a Tri-S trip his sophomore year. Allen also traveled to Guatemala on the same trip and was able to see the excitement Daugherty had for politics there. “The observations he made about politics and economics [in Guatemala] took on a level of depth that one rarely encounters in the classroom,” said Allen.
Once Daugherty realized his passion for politics, he continued to pursue his studies by researching the development and inequality in Latin America for an Honors Program project. “It got me used to doing independent research,” said Daugherty. He added that it also helped prepare him for studying international politics in graduate school. “Drs. Frank and Allen’s classes definitely prepared me,” said Daugherty.
Allen said he knew Daugherty was ready for graduate school. “It stopped being about just getting the grade and became about gaining wisdom about the world,” said Allen. “He began citing research off the top of his head on just about every topic he came across in class.”
Daugherty’s involvement in Pi Sigma Alpha, AU’s political science national honor society, and Model UN, an academic simulation of the United Nations, helped shape Daugherty for further study in Latin American politics. He was a part of Model UN for all four years of college and led the program for three years. “His presence is still felt among our students,” said Allen. Daugherty noted that he “gained valuable leadership skills” from his participation in the program and other extracurricular activities at AU. These skills will help Daugherty excel in graduate school and in his future career.
— Anna Rayis is a senior from Columbus, Ohio, majoring in communication arts. Rayis is an associate with Fifth Street Communications®, writing on behalf of the Anderson University Office of University Communications..
Anderson University is a private Christian university in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God (Anderson, Ind.), Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.