The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences


The Rockefeller Center bids farewell to team member, Thanh Nguyen.

Thanh Nguyen joined the Center in 2011 as the Program Coordinator for the Co-Curricular Internships Program and the Management and Leadership Development Program (MLDP) and more recently served as the Center’s first Design and Entrepreneurship Officer. In this role, he continued to facilitate MLDP into the sixth year of the program and assisted Professor Samwick as a Teaching Fellow to develop the PBPL 43/ECON 77: Social Entrepreneurship course which launched this past summer. His passion for leadership development, technology, and innovation will be sorely missed, not to mention the generosity in which he shared with the Center and colleagues his talents for photography, his knack with any kind of software or technology, and playful sense of humor.

Winter 2015 Rockefeller Center Direct Line - Experiential Learning

Rockefeller Center Director Andrew Samwick provides commentary on a variety of issues in the Direct Line, which is published at the start of each term. 

Inauguration of Philip J. Hanlon '77

In his inauguration address, President Hanlon issued a call-to-action to build Dartmouth’s academic enterprise around four themes: experiential learning, learning technologies, research impact, and affordability. The programs at the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center incorporate all of these themes—most prominently experiential learning—in the realms of public policy and leadership development.

Faculty Research Grants in Action: Michele Tine

Extending beyond the walls of the Rockefeller Center, Dartmouth Professor Michele Tine of the Education Department has seen her research succeed as a beneficiary of a grant made possible by the Corrigan Family Gift.

Professor Tine uses her research to build a foundation for solving educational problems faced by children in communities of rural poverty. Shortly after joining the Dartmouth faculty, Professor Tine sought out a Junior Faculty Grant from the Rockefeller Center.

She notes that “The goals of the Rockefeller Center are very well aligned with my own work,” specifically in regards to the public policy implications of her findings. The exploratory nature of Tine’s research restricted it from funding through many traditional sources, but it was a perfect fit for the Rockefeller Center’s mission.

“It’s a fantastic funding mechanism for studies at Dartmouth that might not otherwise be funded,” Professor Tine emphasizes.

Faculty Research Grants in Action: Deborah Nichols

A Rockefeller Center grant proved to be a vital source of funding when Professor Nichols sought to explore an Aztec farming settlement northwest of Mexico City theorized to hold the secrets of how large-scale societies first formed and developed.

With questions as to the continued existence of the site with the growth of Mexico City in the fifty years since the last visit, only the accommodating nature of a Rockefeller Center grant provided the backing necessary to make a return visit to the site in 2013, results of which led to a larger grant from the National Science Foundation.

"These small grants can become the seed for initiating larger projects and being able to establish their feasibility," stressed Professor Nichols. Subsequent site visits, including a six week field study in summer 2014, have involved Dartmouth students in their research and further cemented the Rockefeller Center’s social science mission.

-Written by Tyler Stoff '15, Rockefeller Center Student Program Assistant

Course Opportunity for 15W: PBPL 5: Introduction to Public Policy

This Winter Term, the Rockefeller Center offers its gateway to the Public Policy minor.
PBPL 5: Introduction to Public Policywith Professor Ronald Shaiko (10 Hour)

This course is designed as the gateway offering for students beginning to pursue a minor in public policy through the Rockefeller Center. The term will be divided into four main components:

  • The Nature of Public Policy: What is Public Policy, Who Makes It, and Why Study It?
  • Making Public Policy: The Process, Structure, and Context of Policymaking
  • The Policy Players: Institutional and Non-Institutional Actors
  • The Policy Game: Rules, Strategies, Culture, and Resources

In the concluding section of the course, we will be pursuing specific policy domains—environmental policy, education policy, health care policy, welfare policy, immigration policy, and defense policy. 
Dist: SOC; WCult: W.


The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences