Active Citizenry Series


The Active Citizenry Series will give students insight into various governmental processes while empowering them to apply this knowledge to be an active and engaged participant in society. While covering topics ranging from the media’s role in politics to how the electoral college works, students will be able to foster an environment of common ground and reduce political polarization. Students will have the opportunity to build a network of people passionate about civics, as well as gain confidence in their ability to reach out to community members on their own after attending the workshops.

Special Acknowledgements:

Erinn Foote, for her Impact Leadership Village project that served as a foundation for Active Citizenry Series.

Madison Teeter, Graduate Assistant of Leadership and Civic Engagement that developed a robust network of experts to lead the curriculum, and for her work of implementing the program.

Program Outcomes

Note: Participants will only gain all of the knowledge and abilities listed below if they attend all of the workshops offered throughout the academic year.

AParticipants will understand the difference between how the various branches of government operate in practice and in theory.
BParticipants will be able to outline the relationship between history and its influences on the current political environment.
CParticipants will understand how the current politicians in office have influenced the overall political system, both within traditional and nontraditional structures.
DParticipants will be able to outline how the media plays a significant role in American politics. Additionally, participants will learn how to distinguish between reliable and unreliable news sources.
EParticipants will be able to conduct productive conversations surrounding various ideas and concepts while being respectful of other individuals.
FParticipants will be encouraged to share their thoughts and opinions in safe environments.
GParticipants will be able to understand how the combination of various lived experiences form personal beliefs and values. Furthermore, participants will be challenged to analyze their own beliefs and values after hearing others share their lived truths.
HParticipants will be able to identify avenues and barriers to active participation in their community.
IParticipants will understand their rights within the political system and know how to create meaningful change.
JParticipants will obtain the knowledge needed to become active in politics on the local and national levels. Participants will gain access to a network of individuals who are dedicated to civics that will encourage them to stay involved.

*Adapted from Eastern Carolina University’s Citizen U program

Active Citizenry Series Workshop Schedule 2019-2020

Fall 2019

How Does the American Government Actually Work? Theory vs. Practice

This workshop aims to highlight how complex and intricate the three branches of government are, and how they work together. Many of us are taught in basic Civic and US History courses that each branch of government has a set list of duties that they are restricted to, when in actuality they are very intertwined. Participants who attend this workshop will walk away with a more holistic understanding of the United States government.

  • Outcomes Covered: A, B, C, E, F
  • Wednesday, September 25th 6:00-7:30 PM
  • Talley 3223

Political Polarization & Deliberative Dialogue

Political discussions are getting more and more difficult to have, as individuals are fearful of their personal views and beliefs being highly criticized. This workshops aims to explain how we have come to live in the highly politically polarized world we are in today. Additionally, it will cover how to conduct deliberative dialogue and productive conservations surrounding political topics.

  • Outcomes Covered: C, E, F, G
  • Thursday, October 24th 6:00-7:30 PM
  • Talley 4280

Media Literacy & Spotting Fake News

With there being so many different methods and mediums to access world events updates, it has becoming increasingly more important for individuals to be weary of where they are receiving their news from. This workshop aims to teach participants not only how important it is to stay updated on current events, but how to do it effectively. Additionally, the workshop will cover how to spot fake news articles and outlets.

  • Outcomes Covered: C, D, E, F
  • Thursday, November 21st 6:00-7:30 PM
  • Talley 4280

Spring 2020*

The Role of Interest Groups, NGOs, Lobbyists, and PACs in Government

Participants of this workshop will learn the intricacies of how various politically engaged groups impact the American government.  We are hoping to have a panel of speakers that will be composed of individuals from interest groups, non-governmental organizations, lobbyist groups, and political action committees. Participants who attend this workshop will walk away with a better understanding of how outside organizations influence our government, as well as how they can become involved in these groups themselves.

  • Outcomes Covered: C, E, F, H, J
  • Held in January 2020

Electoral College & Voting

How does the electoral college work? Does your individual vote actually count? (Hint: the answer is yes!) What’s the deal with all of these voter ID laws? Come learn the answer to all of these questions at this workshop about the electoral college and voting! Participants of this workshop will walk away feeling confident about what their vote means and how the whole voting process works in America.

  • Outcomes Covered: E, F, H, I, J
  • Held in February 2020

How to Stay Involved in Politics

The world of politics is complex, difficult, elaborate, and frankly, tiring. However, being civically engaged is one of the greatest privileges we have as members of a democracy. Participants of this workshop will walk away feeling rejuvenated and inspired to be involved in politics in anyway they see fit – whether that be walking in a protest, volunteering for a candidate’s campaign, or running for a political office.

  • Outcomes Covered: E, F, H, I, J
  • Held in March 2020

*Exact dates for the Spring semester will be posted later in the year. Sign up for our newsletter to be the first to hear news and updates!