Congress to Campus

Former Members of Congress to Visit SUNY Brockport

On September 26-28, two former Members of the United States Congress, the Honorable Orval Hansen (R-ID, 1969-1975) and the Honorable Andy Jacobs (D-IN, 1965-73, 1975-97) will visit SUNY Brockport as part of the Congress to Campus Program. The Congress to Campus Program was founded by the U.S. Association of Former Members of Congress in 1976 with the goal of introducing students and others in college communities to individuals with firsthand knowledge of our representative democracy and a life dedicated to public service. The program continues as collaboration between the Association of Former Members, the Stennis Center for Public Service, and the Center for Democracy and Citizenship. Each year, the program sends bipartisan pairs of former Members of Congress - one Democrat and one Republican - to visit college campuses around the country. The former members spend about one and a half days on campus conducting classes, holding community forums, meeting informally with students and faculty, visiting high schools and civic organizations, and doing interviews and talk show appearances with local press and media.

The Congress to Campus program fits perfectly within the objectives of the American Democracy Project as it personalizes those individuals who perform a crucial role in the federal government. The program is especially designed to reach out to students who feel alienated and distant from their government. It is a crucial part of the program’s mission to help close the civic learning and engagement deficit among the county’s college-age young people. Congress to Campus also hopes to inspire some students to enter a career in public service. The program’s benefits are stated nicely by a professor who hosted a visit to Northern Arizona University, “The students have been unanimous in expressing both their appreciation and how much they learned. For most of them, seeing a ‘real live’ member of Congress is something they would never experience, and the exposure they received at NAU will stay with them for a long time.”