Rob Mellen Jr.
Assistant Professor of Instruction
Home Campus: Tampa
Office: SOC 380
I am originally from New England (Connecticut) and have lived in many places around
the United States. I spent much of my life in California between Sacramento and San
Francisco but I have also lived in Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, Washington, Mississippi,
and now, Florida.
I earned my BA in political science/Eastern European Studies at UCLA; my MA and PhD are from Washington State University, which means I am a PAC-12 guy when it comes to college sports. Go Bruins! Go Cougs! I taught at Mississippi State University for nine years, so there is a bit of affection for the Bulldogs in there as well. My teaching and research interests revolve around the presidency and the interaction between the executive branch, legislative branch, and the judiciary. I focus most closely on the president and their activities, especially during midterm elections. I have published multiple articles focused on what presidents do during the midterms and how effective their efforts are. I also examine the collaboration and conflict between the branches that either leads to or precludes effective government. I am a big fan of the late Richard Neustadt and his theory of presidential power, which exists in the ability to persuade according to him. The reliance on command authority is a sign of a failure to lead effectively.
When I am not teaching, I enjoy traveling (especially cruising), playing golf, and going to Disney World. This summer, I spent six weeks in Europe and visited nine countries (and a few hours at Disneyland Paris), and attended The Open Championship in St. Andrews, Scotland (the home of golf). I look forward to meeting you in class! Go Bulls!