J. Wilson, Assistant Professor, Allegheny College
The highest level of civic participation requires that citizens and non-citizens alike learn how governance processes work, how decisions are made, how systems are organized and how to intervene in these processes. Previous workshops include:
Researching the Power of Your District
Participants will learn the importance of knowing where the power resides in their district and the impact that power has had on their daily lives. The four-hour session will conclude with participants utilizing research tools to learn how to research where power resides, who has power, and how to expand upon the existing power.
Researching the Power of Decision Makers
Participants will learn the importance of knowing where the local decision makers derive their power. During this interactive hands-on session, teams will research local decision-makers and produce a report including a biography, their top 10 contributors, top five endorsers, past 3 election results, as well as boards, committees, and awards of decision makers.
Analyzing Election Results and Predicting Election Outcomes
Participants will learn the importance of understanding past election results, demographic and power shifts. Participants will research and analyze the results of the last three elections, demographic and boundary changes and shifting political conditions. They will then make predictions before a panel, of where power could be built and predict the outcome of upcoming elections.
Researching the Policy and Voting History of Decision-Makers
Understanding why and how policies affect the day-to-day lives of people is the most important element for increasing civic engagement and organizing. Working in teams, participants will analyze a case study to research the positions elected officials (and those possibly running for office) have taken on a policy.
Working with Board of Elections to Increase Civic Engagement
Increasing electoral participation can build inclusive, collective action; raise awareness, involvement and responsibilities in public policy formation and strengthen community and democratic institutions. Working with the Board of Elections in a three-hour interactive session, participants will learn the process and timeline of elections.