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LSU Manship School of mass Communication

Academy of Applied Politics

2014 Manship School’s Academy of Applied Politics


LSU’s Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs announces the return of the Manship School’s Academy of Applied Politics, an eight-week program about practical politics for people interested in the latest developments in strategies and tactics for campaigns and public affairs. The Academy will be led by experts from around the country. Each week the Academy will focus on a different topic about recent changes in tactics, tools and technology for campaigns and elections.


Classes will be held on Thursday evenings in the spring of 2014 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Journalism Building on LSU’s campus. The Academy will run March 6 through April 24 (no class on April 17 due to LSU’s spring break).


Enrollment is capped at 30 participants. The tuition is $550. LSU alumni and parents of current LSU students receive a 10 percent discount. A limited number of Manship School of Mass Communication students will be admitted to the program on scholarship.


The application for the Academy is available here.


Student scholarship application is available here.


“The Academy’s approach to practical politics is designed for anyone interested in understanding today’s sophisticated electoral and public affairs campaigns, working for a campaign or even running for office yourself,” said Dr. Christopher Mann, director of the Academy of Applied Politics. “Our goal is for participants to gain an understanding of the latest techniques and strategies in campaigns and public affairs.”


Each week, the Academy will focus on a different topic and will host a guest or guests who are noted for their expertise in that particular area of political campaigning.


2014 Speakers to include:

  • Charlie Cook & Jennifer Duffy will lead a panel on how new tactics, tools and technologies, as well as changes in the political landscape and campaign finance regulations, will make the 2014 U.S. Senate race different from anything we have seen before in Louisiana. Charlie Cook is the Editor and Publisher of the Cook Political Report and the nation’s leading campaign analyst. He is also a Louisiana native. Jennifer Duffy is the Senior Editor of the Cook Political Report responsible for US Senate races. She is one of the nation’s leading political analysts in her own right and former Press Secretary for the National Republican Senatorial Committee.
  • Jennifer Johnson will discuss the role of public opinion polling by state legislative campaigns and state legislative policy development. Her work includes polling for state legislative caucuses across the country, as well as many other candidates, corporations and political organizations. She is principal of LJR Custom Strategies with offices in Baton Rouge and Washington, D.C.
  • Gerry Tyson will discuss tactics for grassroots mobilization for campaigns and legislative advocacy. With four decades of experience in direct voter contact, Gerry has seen tremendous changes in the way campaigns mobilize voter. He is the president of the Tyson Organization in Ft. Worth, Texas.
  • Vincent Harris will discuss the latest tactics and technology in online campaigning. He ran the online operations of three Presidential campaigns (Huckabee, Perry and Gingrich) and the upset victory by Senator Ted Cruz. Campaigns & Elections Magazine recently named him the youngest “Rising Star” in Politics. He is the president of Harris Media, LLC with offices in Austin, Texas and Orlando, Fla.
  • Daniel Martin will discuss the role of polling in developing messages for campaigns. His recent work includes Mississippi Initiative 26 (Life Begins at Conception), Obama for America and other campaigns across the nation. He is a native of Jackson, Miss. and pollster with Brilliant Corners in Washington, D.C.
  • Bob Mann will lead a panel of Louisiana reporters, bloggers and political communication professionals on how to get media coverage in the evolving media environment. He is a political blogger, former reporter and former Communications Director for Governor Blanco, Senator John Breaux and Senator Russell Long. He is currently the Manship Chair and professor in the Manship School of Communication.
  • Alex Lundry will discuss the use of big data and micro-targeting in campaigns. He is Senior Vice President and Chief Data Scientist at TargetPoint, a leading Republican analytics and public opinion research firm. During the 2012 election, he took a leave from TargetPoint to serve as Director of Data Science for the Romney for President campaign.


Participants attending at least six of the eight sessions will earn a certificate attesting that they have successfully completed the Academy’s course of study.

All applications must be submitted by February 7, 2014. Applications can be emailed to Christopher Mann, director of the Manship School’s Academy of Applied Politics,  cmann13@lsu.edu.

Manship School’s Academy of Applied Politics

c/o Christopher Mann

211 Journalism Building

Baton Rouge, LA 70803


Please contact Christopher Mann for more information about the Manship School’s Academy of Applied Politics at (225) 578-3912 or cmann13@lsu.edu.


2013 AAP Photo Gallery