• Associate Professor Michael Rocca is one of UNM’s award-winning instructors who teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on American politics, the U.S. Congress and the American presidency.
  • Most of his work deals with the politics of congressional position taking including minorities in Congress and legislative participation in the U.S. Congress
  • Rocca is also focuses his research on campaign contributions and spending in U.S. elections examining the link between PAC contributions and position taking, and he conducts research on Latino politics in the U.S. Congress. 
  • At the state level, Rocca was part of a report titled, Crony Capitalism, Corruption and the Economy in the State of New Mexico, which examined crony capitalism in the state of New Mexico with a focus on the relationship between business and government, primarily because the private sector is integral to a state’s economic growth.
  • Rocca serves on the executive board of the Legislative Studies Section of the American Political Science Association.
  • His teaching interests include the American Presidency, American Politics, Legislative Process, Junior Honors seminar, and American Politics seminars at the graduate level and undergraduate levels. 
  • He also serves as the Political Science department's internship coordinator, and serves on the UNM Athletic Council, UNM Faculty Senate, and selection committee of the Fred Harris Congressional Internship Program.
  • Rocca was a UNM Presidential Teaching Fellow Award nominee and Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award, Nominee, both in 2014.
  • Rocca received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Davis in 2004.

Additional areas of interest
Rocca's subfield is American politics and his primary research and teaching interests relate to American national institutions, particularly the US Congress.

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