When asked which teacher I wanted to pick for this series, I knew right away. I wanted to interview the person whose engaging teaching style, sense of humor, and compelling interest in his subject greatly enhanced my experience in my Political Science and Government classes. For over two years Professor Pickering, an adjunct faculty member here at Tulane, has taught United States Government, Comparative Politics, and Media Politics.
Professor Pickering Fast Facts:
From: Houma, Louisiana, otherwise known as the Cajun country
Education: Louisiana State University (LSU)
Most random job: AP grader for the United States Government AP (2 years), Salt Lake City, Utah
Favorite food: Any type of pizza, but especially Taco Pizza (nacho cheese, red sauce, taco seasoning, beef, lettuce tomatoes, cheddar cheese)
Professor Pickering’s first memory of politics began with the demolishment of the Berlin Wall between East and West Germany: “I remember asking my parents what it was and what it meant.” He explained to me that this event was one that has shaped our current world and was a profound moment to remember in history. Professor Pickering’s interest in politics appeared again during his high school mock trial: “I was in civics class and I remember working as an attorney in the trial. This experience got me interested in law and the process of appeals.”
When Professor Pickering was a freshman in college, he decided to sign up for an Introduction to Government class and immediately switched his major to Political Science, saying “I fell in love with the field.”
Now two years into teaching the subject, I asked him why he loved this field of study. He explained that “there are always new things that happen in our country and around the world. The United States is involved in everything in the world so it is easy to see our role in the world.”
Pickering listed some ways to get involved in politics in New Orleans: from working for the mayor of New Orleans to working for a political nonprofit such as Leadership for Educational Equity or the Borgen Project, to even working for the Louisiana attorney’s office, there are plenty of opportunities in this city for students interested in government and politics.
Besides teaching, Professor Pickering loves to hang out and eat with friends, explore the fabulous city of New Orleans, look out for new movies, and visit with his family and friends. Next time you are looking for a new academic passion or just want to hear about current events and their impact on the world, venture to Norman Mayer, where you can find Professor Pickering, or even better, sign up for his array of classes (American Government, Comparative Politics, or Media Politics).