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MC to host series of election-related events

Barry McNamara
Monmouth College will use the upcoming 2012 election as an opportunity to promote voter engagement and education.
The college’s first election engagement event will be held on Sept. 13 at 7 p.m. in the Morgan Room in Poling Hall. Members of David Timmerman’s “Building Communities” Citizenship class will lead a mock session of the ancient Athenian assembly. The topic for the deliberation will be the competing plans for tax policy being advocated by the Obama and Romney presidential campaigns.
Students in MC’s other Citizenship courses will get into the act later this fall with election-centered events, as will students in “American Politics,” a 100-level political science course, who will conduct election “action labs.” On Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. in the Morgan Room, the class will be joined by guests from the community as they present readings and poems reflecting democratic ideals and discuss how Americans succeed and fail in living up to them. Both the Sept. 13 and Sept. 17 events are free and open to the public.
“Since Monmouth’s capstone experience is to lead students to consider their role as citizens, it makes sense that upper-level students, especially in the Citizenship courses, would take the lead in promoting participation in this year’s important election,” said faculty member Lee McGaan, who teaches one of the courses.
Next month, students in another political science course, “The American Presidency,” will coordinate and host a debate, and other activities will include discussions by MC faculty member Joe Angotti, retired executive producer of NBC Nightly News, and Brad McMillan, executive director of the Institute of Principled Leadership.
A full schedule of events can be found at department.monm.ed/cata/election-engagement-info.htm.
It’s worth noting that college officials actually began talking about the 2012 election at a campus event following the 2010 election. There, political science lecturer Robin Johnson predicted, “With 275 electoral votes, Obama beats Romney.”
Johnson’s political acumen was on target regarding the GOP nominee. Two months from now, it will be known if his crystal ball had the electoral votes right, too.