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Academical

Academical

By Virginia Policy Review
Coming to you from the heart of Thomas Jefferson's Academical Village, Academical is the official podcast of the Virginia Policy Review (VPR). The podcast is staffed by the Master of Public Policy students at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy at the University of Virginia (UVA).

VPR is not a part of or an agency of UVA. It is an independent organization responsible for managing its own activities and affairs. UVA does not direct, supervise, or control VPR and is not responsible for VPR's contracts, acts, or omissions.

Learn more at: www.virginiapolicyreview.org/
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Director David Paylor, Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Erin Melly (MPP '22) about her interest in environmental policy (1:47). Sean and Erin then speak with David Paylor, Director of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, about his career in state government and how he operates in a role the requires managing stakeholders with diverse interests (10:30). Related Reading Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
45:44
March 9, 2021
Dia Kayyali, Associate Director for Advocacy at Mnemonic
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Ben Feldman (MPP '21) about what brought him to Batten and his internship at the Syrian Archive (2:09). Sean and Ben then speak with Dia Kayyali, Associate Director for Advocacy at Mnemonic, about the ongoing discussions around accountability in content moderation and how to responsibly regulate the internet and big tech (14:57). Related Reading Mnemonic (link) Dia Kayyali in Vice: If Trump Can Be Banned, What About Other World Leaders Who Incite Violence? (link) Hadi El Khatib and Dia Kayyali in the New York Times: YouTube is Erasing History (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
55:53
March 2, 2021
Liliana Segura, The Intercept
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with Liliana Segura, who is an award-winning investigative journalist at The Intercept covering the U.S. criminal justice system with a focus on the death penalty, about Virginia being on the verge of abolishing capital punishment. Related Reading Liliana Segura at The Intercept (link) Liliana Segura: Trump's Execution Spree is Not About Him. It's About Us. (link) Bielawski and Frost: Time to End Virginia's Death Penalty (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
52:30
February 23, 2021
Chelsea Higgs Wise, Marijuana Justice
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Ben Teese (MPP '21) about his time at Batten (2:00). Sean and Ben then speak with Chelsea Higgs Wise, Executive Director at Marijuana Justice, about Virginia's efforts to legalize marijuana and the equity implications around legalization (13:58). Related Reading Marijuana Justice (link) Chelsea Higgs Wise and Ashna Khanna in Richmond Times-Dispatch: Virginia should legalize marijuana (link) Race Capitol (link) JLARC Study (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
57:55
February 16, 2021
Nadwa Al-Dawsari, Middle East Institute
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Morgan Bedford (MPP '21) about her interest in foreign policy and he work with the U.S. Embassy in Yemen (2:08). Sean and Morgan then speak with Nadwa Al-Dawsari, non-resident fellow at the Middle East Institute, about the war in Yemen as well as how the Biden Administration should craft U.S. policy to substantively address the conflict (22:00). Related Reading Council on Foreign Relations: How Severe is Yemen's Humanitarian Crisis? (link) Yemen Matrix: Allies & Adversaries (link) Up for Debate: U.S. Yemen Policy (link) Nadwa Al-Dawsari on Twitter (link)  Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
01:03:46
February 9, 2021
Dr. Lisa D. Cook, Professor of Economics and International Relations at Michigan State University
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Teka Lenahan (MPP '21) about UVA student organization Black Student Leaders in Policy, or BSLIP, and what drives his interest in education policy (2:05). Sean and Teka then speak with Dr. Lisa D. Cook, Professor of Economics and International Relations at Michigan State University, about her work on the Biden-Harris transition team and her role in mentoring young people of color within the field of economics (11:30). Related Reading Dr. Cook in the NY Times: Racism Impoverishes the Whole Economy (link) Dr. Cook's Research (link) BSLIP on Instagram (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
36:16
February 1, 2021
Delegate Sam Rasoul, Virginia House of Delegates
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Maureen Coffey (MPP '21) about her role as president of the Virginia Young Democrats (2:08). Sean and Maureen then speak with Delegate Sam Rasoul about his campaign for Lieutenant Governor and being a progressive in a more rural part of Virginia (19:15). Related Reading Roanoke Del. Sam Rasoul formally announces run for lieutenant governor (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
54:28
November 17, 2020
Penny Abernathy, Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics at UNC-Chapel Hill
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Marisa Lemma (MPP '22) about her book The Marching Women (2:40). Sean and Marisa then speak with Penny Abernathy, Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics at UNC-Chapel Hill, about the decline of local news sources and what that means for our society (11:35). Related Reading The Expanding News Desert (link) Saving Community Journalism (link) The Marching Women (link) VPR Blog (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
59:56
November 10, 2020
Adam Leive, UVA Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Economics
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Audrey McClurg (MPP '21) about how she became interested in health policy and her experience with the Institute for Medicaid Innovation (2:00). Sean and Audrey then speak with Batten Professor Adam Leive (10:45) about his research around the impact of work requirements on SNAP participation and labor supply, healthcare, and COVID's potential impact on social welfare programs. Related Reading Employed in a SNAP? The Impact of Work Requirements on Program Participation and Labor Supply (link) Medicaid Work Requirements – Results from the First Year in Arkansas (link) Is the Social Safety Net a Long-Term Investment? Large Scale Evidence from the Food Stamps Program (link) How Racism has Shaped Welfare Policy in America since 1935 (link) Does One Medicare Fit All? The Economics of Uniform health Insurance Benefits (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
52:59
November 3, 2020
Thomas Bowman, Transition Virginia
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Robert Grier (MPP '21) about his experience as a fundraiser on political campaigns (2:30). Sean and Robert then speak with Thomas Bowman, a political consultant and co-host of the podcast Transition Virginia (15:40), about Virginia Democrats heading into the November election. Related Reading Transition Virginia Podcast (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Ben Feldman, Ben Teese & Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
56:47
October 27, 2020
Shannon Taylor, Henrico County Commonwealth's Attorney
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski talks with co-host Jordan Sicklick (MPP '21) about his summer experience interning at the Department of Justice (5:05). Sean and Jordan then speak with Henrico County Commonwealth's Attorney Shannon Taylor (18:30) about criminal justice reform at the local level. Related Reading Richmond Times-Dispatch Column on Henrico County Police Accountability (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
01:14:02
October 13, 2020
Kyle Kondik, UVA Center for Politics
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski speaks with Kyle Kondik, managing editor of Sabato's Crystal Ball at UVA's Center for Politics, about the state of the Presidential, Senate, and House elections now that we are less than a month from Election Day. Related Reading Sabato's Crystal Ball (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
29:19
October 5, 2020
Irene Cruz, Summer Search
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski speaks with Batten Latinx Network president Jasmine Rangel (MPP '21) and one of the Batten Latinx Network's founders Brian Zuluaga (BA '20) about the first generation college student experience (2:55). Then, Jasmine and Sean speak with Irene Cruz of Summer Search (25:43), a nationwide nonprofit that works with first-generation college students from low-income communities facing systemic barriers to earning a college degree. Related Reading Summer Search (link) 'Harry Potter of Batten' Has Left an Indelible Mark (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
01:06:18
September 29, 2020
Brian Cannon, Fair Maps Virginia
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski and VPR Managing Editor Morgan Smith (MPP '21) talk about the latest at VPR (2:30) and then speak with Brian Cannon of Fair Maps Virginia (10:05) about the history and substance of the redistricting constitutional amendment on the ballot in Virginia. Related Reading Virginia Redistricting Amendment Language (link) Fair Maps Virginia (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
47:22
September 21, 2020
Luis Oyola, Legal Aid Justice Center
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski and Batten Latinx Network President Jasmine Rangel (MPP '21) talk about Jasmine's vision for BLN (3:44) and then speak with Luis Oyola of the Legal Aid Justice Center (18:45) on his background and his work as a community organizer. Related Reading Batten Latinx Network Instagram (link) Latest update on Senator Boysko's legislation around state inspections of ICE facilities (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
01:09:21
September 14, 2020
Secretary Atif Qarni, Virginia Secretary of Education
VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski and Meghan Clancy (MPP '21) talk about how Meghan came to Batten (3:50) and then speak with Virginia Secretary of Education Atif Qarni (11:28) on the morning that many public schools in Virginia began their school year, many of them virtually. Related Reading Secretary Qarni's Washington Post OpEd (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions.
01:11:22
September 9, 2020
Ian H. Solomon, Dean of the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy at UVA
In the relaunch of Academical, VPR Director of Operations Sean Bielawski and VPR Editor-in-Chief Geoff Paul talk about the upcoming year for VPR (2:10) and then speak with Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy Dean Ian Solomon (6:40) about his busy summer and how he is feeling as classes begin. Related Reading Dean Solomon's Medium Articles (link) UVA Racial Equity Task Force Report (link) Acknowledgments Music: Blue Dot Sessions Voiceover: Zach Mendez Editing: Sean Bielawski Disclaimer Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise, or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization's contracts, acts, or omissions. 
01:00:35
August 31, 2020
Ep. 8 - Melody Barnes, Co-Director of UVA's Democracy Initiative
Academical's Executive Producer Joshua Margulies and VPR's Editor-in-Chief Jack DiMatteo sit down with Professor Melody Barnes (@MelodyCBarnes), Co-Director of the University of Virginia's Democracy Initiative (@UVADemocracy). Twitter  |  Facebook  |  LinkedIn Editing: Joshua Margulies Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
36:55
June 10, 2019
Ep. 7 - Kate Addleson, Director of the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter
Executive Editor James Leckie and Associate Editors Henry Frost and Kevin Breiner sit down with Kate Addleson, Director of the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter (@VASierraClub).  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  LinkedIn Editing: Joshua Margulies Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
53:26
May 28, 2019
Ep. 6 - Michael Finnegan, President of Atlantic Media
Executive Producer Joshua Margulies and Associate Editors Anna Higgins and Ashley Bultman travel to Washington, D.C. for a discussion with Michael Finnegan, President of Atlantic Media.  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  LinkedIn 7th Annual National Journal Conference [video recordings] Editing: Joshua Margulies Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
01:09:10
April 8, 2019
Ep. 5 - Ned Price, Dir. of Policy & Communications at National Security Action
VPR's Editor-in-Chief Jack DiMatteo (@JackDiMatteo) sits down with Ned Price (@NedPrice), Director of Policy & Communications at National Security Action (@NatSecAction). Previously, Price worked as an analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). He was brought on to the National Security Council under President Obama before briefly returning to the CIA under President Trump. The conversation touches on all this and more.  Journal Submissions: http://www.virginiapolicyreview.org/submit.html [open until March 29, 2019] National Journal Conference: http://www.virginiapolicyreview.org/njc-2019.html [Saturday, March 30, 2019 in Charlottesville, VA] Editing: Joshua Margulies Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
29:38
March 18, 2019
Ep. 4 - Chris Lu, Senior Fellow at UVA's Miller Center
VPR's Editor-in-Chief Jack DiMatteo and Associate Editor Alexandre Fall sit down with Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44), Senior Fellow at UVA's Miller Center. Previously, Lu worked in the office of then-Senator Barack Obama, before eventually leading the Obama-Biden transition team. He then served in the Obama Administration as White House Cabinet Secretary before ultimately becoming Deputy Secretary of Labor in 2014. The conversation touches on Lu's education, government service, the 2020 elections, and the political and policy landscape, among other things. Journal Submissions: http://www.virginiapolicyreview.org/submit.html [open until March 29, 2019] National Journal Conference: http://www.virginiapolicyreview.org/njc-2019.html [Saturday, March 30, 2019 in Charlottesville, VA] Editing: Joshua Margulies Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
29:23
February 11, 2019
Ep. 3 - Robert Zullo, Editor-in-Chief of the Virginia Mercury
Executive Producer Joshua Margulies, Executive Editor James Leckie, and Associate Editor Anna Higgins travel to Richmond, VA for a discussion with Robert Zullo, Editor-in-Chief of the Virginia Mercury. The conversation touches upon the site's mission, goals, reporting approach, and the state of journalism more broadly. Editing: Joshua Margulies Artwork: Brian Kim Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
55:08
January 11, 2019
Ep. 2 - Interview with Virginia Secretary of Health and Human Resources Daniel Carey, M.D.
VPR Executive Editor James Leckie interviews Daniel Carey, Virginia's Secretary of Health and Human Resources. Dr. Carey was appointed to the position in January 2018 by Governor Ralph Northam. Before holding public office he worked as a cardiologist and as an executive in the healthcare industry. Our interview touches on Medicaid expansion, the opioid crisis, needle exchange programs, and access to care more broadly.  Research: James Leckie  Editing: Joshua Margulies  Artwork: Brian Kim  Music: Blue Dot Sessions Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
30:25
October 26, 2018
Ep. 1 - Interview with Matthew Olsen, Chief Trust & Security Officer at Uber
In our very first episode we are joined by Matthew Olsen, Chief Trust & Security Officer at Uber. Olsen had previously led the Guantanamo Review Task Force, served as General Counsel at the NSA, and was appointed Director of the National Counterterrorism Center by President Obama. Our interview touches upon closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay, the NSA, the intelligence community, the Five Eyes, Olsen's new role at Uber, warrant canaries, and Silicon Valley culture.  Executive Producer: Joshua Margulies  Associate Producer: Shea Kearns  Associate Producer & VPR Content Director : Anna Haritos  VPR Managing Director: Ellen Beahm Although this organization has members who are University of Virginia students and may have University employees associated or engaged in its activities and affairs, the organization is not a part of or an agency of the University. It is a separate and independent organization which is responsible for and manages its own activities and affairs. The University does not direct, supervise or control the organization and is not responsible for the organization’s contracts, acts or omissions.
33:08
October 13, 2018