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The Frank Church Institute

From Interim Dean Andrew Giacomazzi

The Frank Church Institute

The School of Public Service is proud to be the Boise State home of the Frank Church Institute. Established in 1982, the institute seeks to honor the achievements and carry forward the principles and legacy of Senator Frank Church, one of Idaho’s most distinguished native sons.

In this edition of Public Interest, we’ll show you some of the ways this non-partisan institute is fulfilling its mission of promoting civic engagement and understanding of public policy with a focus on foreign relations. We’ll tell you about an exciting discussion series that is free and open to anyone. We’ll share how a generous gift is making it possible for high school students in Idaho to experience a broader horizon through the establishment of a Model United Nations program at Boise State. And most importantly, we’ll introduce you to seven student recipients of Frank Church Public Service Scholarships and share their exciting plans to put their education to work for the public good.

The Frank Church Institute provides a forum for open and informed discussion characterized by civility, tolerance, and compromise. In these rancorous times, the need for civility, tolerance and compromise has never been clearer. Please join us as we endeavor to carry forth the legacy of Sen. Church and work in the public interest.

Thanks for reading,

Andrew Giacomazzi
Interim Dean, School of Public Service
Boise State University

Eye on Student Success - Frank Church Scholars

The Frank Church Public Service Scholarship and Internships are open to all degree-seeking Boise State University students. Priority is given to School of Public Service students with a demonstrated potential for public service. Awards may be for scholarships on campus, in Washington, D.C. or abroad.

This year’s Frank Church Scholars are Kevin Alvarez, Cooper Conway, Natalia Cruces, Taite Griffin, Grace Hall, Reese Richmond and Brittany Winkler. Congratulations scholars!

Read the bios of our Frank Church Scholars on our website. 
Frank Church Scholars Grace Hall and Kevin Alvarez

Academics Talking Academics in Elevators

In the latest Academics Talking Academics in Elevators, Interim Dean Andrew Giacomazzi interviews Frank Church Scholars Kevin Alvarez and Grace Hall. They discuss a wide range of subjects including:

  • Their academic interests
  • Their plans for the future
  • How Frank Church Scholarships are helping them achieve their goals.

Grace Hall

Watch our interview with Grace

Kevin Alvarez

Watch our interview with Kevin

Boise State Model United Nations program receives $500,000 gift

Boise State’s new Model United Nations program, funded through the largest philanthropic gift to the university’s Frank Church Institute, will soon give Idaho high school students expanded learning opportunities focusing on global issues.

Idaho businessman C. Fredrick Cornforth, a member of the institute’s board of directors, pledged $500,000 to help fund the Model UN diplomacy-based competition. The money will be used for program delivery and to subsidize high school students’ attendance at an annual competition to be held on the Boise State campus.

Read more in Boise State News

Interview with Fred Cornforth

We recently interviewed Fred Cornforth to discuss his donation to Boise State’s new Model United Nations program, the largest philanthropic gift to the university’s Frank Church Institute. We asked Mr. Cornforth about:

  • His Model United Nations experiences as a student. 
  • How Model United Nations changes the way he looks at the world
  • Why there is a need for MUN
  • How Model United Nations can be especially beneficial to students from rural areas
  • Why he made the gift in honor of Bob and Kathy Kustra
  • What it means to further the legacy of Sen. Church through this gift

Fridays with Frank

Fridays with Frank is a (currently) virtual discussion lecture series produced by the Frank Church Institute. Recently, we have hosted discussions with Sen. Jon Tester, Steven Feldstein (watch by using the following link) , Marc Johnson, and Jonathan and Charlotte Alter.

Watch "The Rise of Digital Repression" YouTube
Steven Feldstein is the former holder of the Frank and Bethine Church Chair of Public Affairs

Frank Church Institute Board Member Releases Book on Digital Repression

Frank Church Institute Board member Steven Feldstein has recently released his first book. The Rise of Digital Repression: How Technology Is Reshaping Power, Politics, and Resistance explores how governments are using digital technology to subdue opponents, suppress dissent, and maintain political power. Feldstein has spent nearly three years investigating the immense changes wrought by technology around the world and conducted field research in Thailand, the Philippines, Ethiopia, and Hong Kong and interviewed government officials, security agents, human rights activists, technologists, journalists, politicians, and tech companies.

Click here to watch a short video about the book on YouTube