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TDC Newsroom

The Democracy Commitment is the leading national organization focused on the civic education of community college students.   To such an end, TDC  is an excellent source of information on community college curricular change, how community colleges are educating and engaging students in our democracy, and ensuring that community college voices are heard and do matter in our society.  TDC National Office aims to expand public and student civic knowledge and understanding. Welcome to the National Newsroom

What's New with TDC

The quarterly newsletter from TDC’s National Office is published at least once every semester and contains updates on TDC’s latest work, announcements, opportunites, and news from member institutions.  See below for the most recent issues and archives of previous issues.

National Blog

Our national blog contains important news, updates, announcements, and opportunities from TDC National’s Office on a weekly basis.  Sign up for the mailing list to receive notifications when they posted and check it out frequently to stay up to date.  Contact the national director for opportunities to contribute.

Student Intern Opportunity For CLDE17

Our 2017 Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (CLDE17) Meeting is a conference that will take place in Baltimore, Md. from June 7-10, 2017. The conference is a convening of higher education students, faculty, administrators, and civic engagement partners designed to build a movement of civic learning and democratic engagement across our colleges and universities. In order to encourage student participation in the CLDE17 meeting, the American Democracy Project, The Democracy Commitment, and the NASPA Lead Initiative are proud to offer the opportunity for three students to have a voice on the planning committee. These intern positions will enable students to do the following:

  • Organize a student symposium on Wednesday, June 7, 2017;
  • Actively promote student engagement in the CLDE17 meeting through blog posts and social media;
  • Coordinate student gatherings and programming at CLDE17;
  • Volunteer (e.g., at the registration desk) onsite at CLDE17;
  • Serve on the planning committee, participating in monthly conference calls, and work leading up to CLDE17; and
  • Additional opportunities will be made available.

We will select three students, one from each initiative as interns, and if chosen, each of the student interns will receive a complimentary registration to the CLDE17 meeting as well as transferable work experience.

Intern Expectations

The duration of this commitment will be remote from November 2016 to July 2017. Interns should expect to participate in monthly planning committee meetings as well as an increasing number of hours of planning as the conference approaches (e.g., program selection in February). All interns must be onsite from noon on Tuesday, June 6th through 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 10th.

Application Process

The process for selection requires the student to be nominated by a faculty or staff sponsor from an ADP, TDC, and/or NASPA campus. Applicants should complete the application form and secure endorsement from a sponsor,and forward the paperwork to Verdis Robinson, Interim National Manager of The Democracy Commitment for final selection by Tuesday, November 1, 2016 at robinsonv@aascu.org. The application can be found here. All applicants will be notified about their application by Friday, November 11, 2016. We look forward to receiving your application and hope to see you in Baltimore in June 2017!

For questions or concerns please contact:

Verdis Robinson
Interim National Manager, The Democracy Commitment
robinsonv@aascu.org | (202) 478-4656

Jen Domagal-Goldman
National Manager, American Democracy Project
domagalj@aascu.org | (202) 478-7833

Stephanie Reynolds
Assistant Director for Knowledge Communities and CLDE Initiatives, NASPA
Sreynolds@naspa.org | (2012) 719-1193

TDC Announces Calls for Participation to Member Institutions

Partnerships formed between TDC and national organizations give our members access to a myriad of opportunities to develop, participate, and communicate the results of their collaborative civic work and democratic learning efforts.  TDC is pleased to announce the following calls for participation to member institutions.  For more information, click on the links or contact: Verdis Robinson, interim National Manager of The Democracy Commitment.


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TDC icitizen Pilot Program

icitizen is pleased to have the opportunity to partner with The Democracy Commitment for our Pilot Program during the 2016-2017 academic year. We are committed to revolutionizing the way students and their campuses interact—not only will icitizen make civic engagement simpler and more powerful for students, but participating campuses will have unprecedented access to their students’ interests and priorities in order to make better, more data-driven decisions.

Participants will be granted full access to icitizen’s client features and the opportunity to provide feedback directly impacting the platform’s continued development. Below is a summary of the features that will be implemented through the program and how they can be used to expand and enhance new or existing programs of democratic engagement.   Click Here for More Info.

 


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TDC Walk 2 Vote Challenge

Join the Movement!!!

The Democracy Commitment is proud to partner with Walk2Vote to present TDC member institutions with a unique opportunity to civically engage community college students with their communities and neighborhoods.

Walk 2 Vote is a student created civic engagement initiative that has grown from a local campus program to a national model for student civic organizing. Student leaders from the University of Houston Downtown began the Walk2Vote initiative in 2012 and have continued it annually. Their model is a guide that walks students through the process of planning their own civic engagement program on their campus.

With TDC Walk 2 Vote Challenge, students become the social capitol of their communities by engaging not only campus communities, but their neighbors and neighborhoods in voter registration and education culminating in leading their communities to the polls on election day.  Click Here For More Info.

 

Join Us!! “Clashes Over Citizenship”- Free Webinar Series

Clashes Over Citizenship Webinar Series

Clashes Over Citizenship:

Promoting, Listening, Learning, and Engagement

A Webinar Series of the Citizenship Under Siege Project

The US Constitution’s preamble speaks of “We the People”—but who is considered part of that sacred circle, and how has this group varied over time? When national identity is hotly contested, what does it mean to experience citizenship as partial, denied, or fully acknowledged? How can the humanities illuminate differing narratives and open up space for understanding, connections, and shared visions of the future?

The Association of American Colleges and Universities and The Democracy Commitment invite faculty, staff, students, and campus community partners to join in one or all of three FREE webinars. These events are designed to expand campus expertise on how to hold constructive conversations about contentious issues and how to institute practices in and out of the classroom that foster engagement across differences.  Register TODAY and join us!

A Three-Part Series

3:00–4:00 p.m. Eastern Time


From Fractious Differences to Engaged Dialogues 

October 13, 2016

How can texts and techniques from the humanities disrupt unexamined positions, put human faces to abstract ideas, and help open up spaces where dialogue and consensus might emerge on historic and contemporary questions about citizenship and who deserves it? What models exist for training dialogue facilitators who can help encourage listening and perspective taking across seemingly intractable positions? (Register online)

  • Verdis Robinson, Interim National Manager, The Democracy Commitment
  • Caryn McTighe Musil, Senior Director of Civic Learning and Democracy Initiatives, Association of American Colleges and Universities
  • John Soltes, Communication Department, County College of Morris
  • Jason Zelesky, Dean of Students, Mount Wachusett Community College

Income Inequality and the Cost of Citizenship 

October 27, 2016

When economic disparities—often intertwined with ethnic, racial, and religious differences—impose real limitations on public participation, how can the humanities provide insights into the historic and persistent reality of differential access to full citizenship rights? Learn how several campuses have engaged their students and communities in examining this issue. (Register online)

  • Steve Davis, History Department, Lone Star College, Kingwood
  • Jill A. Schennum, Chair, Anthropology, Social Sciences, and Economics, County College of Morris
  • Seth Howard, Assistant Director, Center for Civic Engagement, Lone Star College
  • Erika Herrera, Political Science Department, Lone Star College, North Harris
  • Fagan Forhan, Assistant Dean of K-12 Partnerships and Civic Engagement, Mount Wachusett Community College

I Want My Country Back: Immigration, Race, and Citizenship

November 3, 2016

In the midst of sometimes-dramatic demographic and cultural shifts, how have the humanities served to illuminate felt experiences, historical contexts, and ethical issues as the rich mosaic of people in the United States fluctuates? What approaches, courses, and public events lead to shared ends rather than perpetual conflict or feelings of displacement? (Register online)

  • David Kalivas, World History and Director of the Commonwealth Honors Program, Middlesex Community College
  • Helen-Margaret Nasser, Associate Director of the Honors Program, Kingsborough Community College
  • Dona Cady, Dean, Global Education, and Matthew Olson, Dean, Humanities and Social Sciences, Middlesex Community College
  • David Price, History Department, and Vilma E. Fuentes, Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, Santa Fe College

Follow the link for Citizenship Under Siege for more information about the project.

For more information, please contact:

Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and hosted by the Association of American Colleges and Universities & The Democracy Commitment.

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Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations endowment for the expressed in these webinars do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Happy National Voter Registration Day!! From TDC

National Voter Registration Day, September 27, 2016

Happy National Voter Registration Day!!

The Democracy Commitment celebrates National Voter Registration Day as a Special Day of Action.  According to the coalition, in 2008, 6 million Americans didn’t vote because they missed a registration deadline or didn’t know how to register.   In 2016, the movement wants to make sure no one is left out.  On September 27, 2016, volunteers, celebrities, and organizations from all over the country will “hit the streets” for National Voter Registration Day (NVRD).  This single day of coordinated field, technology and media efforts will create pervasive awareness of voter registration opportunities–allowing us to reach tens of thousands of voters who we could not reach otherwise.  National Voter Registration Day is an opportunity to put our differences aside and celebrate the rights that unite us as Americans; democracy.

TDC encourages all member institutions to join the national network of a thousand organizations operating on the ground and through social media to register voters on their campuses and communities while also receiving pledges to vote from those already registered.

Register to Vote using the TDC Register to Vote Tool powered by Rock the Vote: https://register2.rockthevote.com/?partner=35891.  Already registered? Share it with someone who is not!

TDC member institutions that have schedule events include:

  • Allegany College Of Maryland
  • Community College Of Allegheny
  • Cuyahoga Community College
  • Delta College
  • Glendale Community College
  • Lone Star College
  • Los Angeles Harbor College
  • Mesa Community College
  • Miami Dade College
  • Middlesex Community College
  • Monroe Community College
  • Northampton Community College
  • Palo Alto College
  • Paradise Valley Community College
  • Piedmont Virginia Community College
  • Santa Fe College
  • South Mountain Community College
  • Tarrant County College

Congratulations on taking action!  Be sure to share you results with us!

Here’s how other campuses can also take action:

  • Have students Check their registration status to see if they need to register or update their registration.
  • Have students remind friends, family, coworkers, and neighbors to register to vote today by sending them an email telling them to register, check their registration, or update their registration if they need to.

Additionally, our friends at the Fair Elections Legal Network and Campus Vote Project have a variety of resources to help answer any questions you may have about registering and voting:

And be sure to join us on Tuesday, October 4th as we Tweet-up the Vice Presidential Debate using#iDebate16.  For further information on NVRD, visit their website: http://nationalvoterregistrationday.org

#iDebate16 Debate Watch Tweet-Up TONIGHT!!!

Engage the Election 2016 Debate Tweet-Ups

Consider having your students tweet ideas, questions, analysis, and observations about the first 2016 Presidential Debates as part of a political science, communications, or other academic course or as part of a watch event planned on campus. Or join the conversation on your own! Whether you’re hosting a campus Debate Watch Event or will be tuning into the debates on your own, we hope you’ll join us on Twitter using the #iDebate16 hashtag for a robust conversation and analysis of the debates, the candidates and the issues confronting our democracy.

If you’re hosting debate watch events and/or plan to participate in these tweet-ups, please register your participation in this Google Form.

icitizen is a civic technology company that will be conducting polling throughout the Presidential debates, as well as the election itself. We want all voice to be heard! Go to www.icitizen.com, and/or download the icitizen app on your smartphone or tablet. You’ll be able to vote in polls and see how your answers stack up against other students nationwide.

Illinois State University’s Social Media Analytics Command Center (SMACC) will track and provide analysis of our #iDebate16 tweet-ups.

As ADP and TDC are non-partisan and interested in preparing the next generation of informed, engaged citizens, we hope many of you will join us and encourage your students to do so as well—we want to encourage more students to engage in the electoral process and are not looking for a partisan battle, but for a supportive, interesting, and analytical conversation that encourages civic and political engagement.

Join Us!

  • What:  ADP/TDC 2016 Presidential Debate Watch Tweet-Ups
  • When: Monday, 9/26 Presidential Debate 1 from Hofstra University in NYC from 9 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. Eastern (our programming from 8:30 to 11
  • How: On Twitter using the hashtag #iDebate16; it only takes a few minutes for most students to learn to use Twitter, and they can create an account at https://twitter.com
  • Follow: @ADPaascu, @TDCnational, @icitizen and @ISUSOC_SMACC

Be sure to check out our all-new 2016-debate-watch-tweet-up-guide!

Debate Watch Event Resources:

As part of our ADP/TDC Engage the Election 2016 initiative powered by icitizen, we will be hosting a series of Presidential Debate Watch Tweet-ups. More info.

TDC Adopts National Voter Registration Day as a Special Day of Action

National Voter Registration Day, September 27, 2016

The Democracy Commitment adopts National Voter Registration Day as a Special Day of Action.  According to the coalition, in 2008, 6 million Americans didn’t vote because they missed a registration deadline or didn’t know how to register.   In 2016, the movement wants to make sure no one is left out.  On September 27, 2016, volunteers, celebrities, and organizations from all over the country will “hit the streets” for National Voter Registration Day (NVRD).  This single day of coordinated field, technology and media efforts will create pervasive awareness of voter registration opportunities–allowing us to reach tens of thousands of voters who we could not reach otherwise.  National Voter Registration Day is an opportunity to put our differences aside and celebrate the rights that unite us as Americans; democracy.

TDC encourages all member institutions to join the national network of a thousand organizations operating on the ground and through social media to register voters on their campuses and communities while also receiving pledges to vote from those already registered.

Register to Vote using the TDC Register to Vote Tool powered by Rock the Vote: https://register2.rockthevote.com/?partner=35891.  Already registered? Share it with someone who is not!

TDC member institutions who have schedule events include:

  • Allegany College Of Maryland
  • Community College Of Allegheny
  • Cuyahoga Community College
  • Delta College
  • Glendale Community College
  • Lone Star College
  • Los Angeles Harbor College
  • Miami Dade College
  • Middlesex Community College
  • Northampton Community College
  • Palo Alto College
  • Paradise Valley Community College
  • Piedmont Virginia Community College
  • Santa Fe College
  • South Mountain Community College
  • Tarrant County College

Join them and take action!  Click HERE to sign-up.

For further information, visit their website: http://nationalvoterregistrationday.org

ADP/TDC Presidential Debate Watch Tweet-Up Series Announced

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Join Us! Engage the Election 2016 Debate Watch #iDebate16 Tweet-Ups

As part of our ADP/TDC Engage the Election 2016 initiative powered by icitizen, we will be hosting a series of Presidential Debate Watch Tweet-ups.

Planning a debate watch event on campus? Consider tweeting your ideas, questions, analysis and observations about the 2016 Presidential and Vice Presidential Debates as part of a political science, communications or other academic course or as part of a watch event planned on campus. Or join the conversation on your own! Whether you’re hosting a campus or organizational debate watch event or will be tuning into the debates on your own, we hope you’ll join us on Twitter using the #iDebate16 hashtag for a robust conversation and analysis of the debates, the candidates and the issues confronting our democracy.

If you’re hosting a debate watch event and/or plan to participate in these tweet-ups, please register your participation in this Google Form.

As ADP and TDC are non-partisan and interested in preparing the next generation of informed, engaged citizens, we hope many of you will join us and encourage your students to do so as well—we want to encourage more students to engage in the electoral process and are not looking for a partisan battle, but for a supportive, interesting, and analytical conversation that encourages civic and political engagement.

Join Us!

  • What:  ADP/TDC 2016 Presidential Debate Watch Tweet-Ups
  • When:
    • Monday, 9/26:  Presidential Debate 1 from Hofstra University in NYC from 9 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. Eastern (our programming from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern)
    • Tuesday, 10/4: Vice Presidential Debate at Longwood University in Virginia 9 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. Eastern (our programming from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern)
    • Sunday, 10/9: Presidential Town Hall Meeting (time not yet announced)
    • Wednesday, 10/19:  Presidential Debate 2 from UNLV from 9 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. Eastern (our programming from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern)
  • How: On Twitter using the hashtag #iDebate16; it only takes a few minutes for most students to learn to use Twitter, and they can create an account at https://twitter.com
  • Follow: @ADPaascu@TDCnational@icitizen and @ISUSOC_SMACC

Tweet-Up Guide:  Be sure to check out our all-new 2016 ADP/TDC Debate Watch Tweet-Up Guide!

Other Debate Watch Event Resources:

We’re thrilled to partner with icitizen, a civic technology company that will be conducting polling throughout the Presidential debates, as well as the election itself. They want to hear your voice! Go to www.icitizen.com, and/or download the icitizen app on your smartphone or tablet. You’ll be able to vote in polls and see how your answers stack up against others nationwide. In addition, Illinois State University’s Social Media Analytics Command Center (SMACC) will track and provide analysis of our #iDebate16 tweet-ups

Engage the Election Webinar #9- ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge

Engage the Election 2016 Webinar #9:
Is your campus ALL IN? Join the Challenge to Increase Democratic Engagement

Wednesday, September 21, 2016 | 2 p.m. – 3 p.m. EST
RSVP here.

all inIs your campus ALL IN? More than 130 college campuses across 33 states (including 45 ADP campuses & 12 TDC campuses) have committed to improving democratic engagement by joining the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge.

The challenge is a national, nonpartisan initiative recognizing campuses for increasing democratic engagement and student voting. Your campus is invited to a special Engage the Election 2016 webinar to learn more about this exciting new initiative. During the webinar, participants will: learn about the background of the ALL IN Challenge and why it is important for campuses to join; understand who can join, and how to join; and be introduced to the steps involved after committing as well as the opportunity for recognition and awards. RSVP TODAY for the Webinar Tomorrow!!

 

It’s not too late to RSVP- Engage the Election Webinar #8: Text, Talk, Vote!

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Webinar #8
Text, Talk, Vote!
Wednesday, September 14, 2016 | 2 p.m. EST  |  Register here.

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Our Eighth Free Webinar in the Engage the Election 2016 Series features Text, Talk, Vote!  Join Us!

Text, Talk, Vote uses a text-based platform to facilitate in-person conversations about voting with a small group of young people (3-4 per group). The group receives and discusses prompts delivered by text, interacting with each other and moving through the program at their own pace. The free program creates meaningful conversations about politics and policy, elevates the voices of younger voters, and increases civic participation and turnout. After using the platform, participants identifying as “definitely going to vote” rises by 21%. Participants not only enjoy the program and have a great time, but also feel more informed and report learning something new from their peers. Try Text, Talk, Vote right now by texting in “Vote” to 42016. You can use this free, open platform whenever you want.

TTV Toolkit can be found  here.
Communications Toolkit can be downloaded directly here.

For more information about Text, Talk, Vote.

“Citizenship Under Siege” Fall 2016 Webinar Series

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Citizenship Under Siege:
Promoting Listening, Learning, and Engagement

Fall 2016 Webinar SeriesThe US Constitution’s preamble speaks of “We the People”—but who is considered part of that sacred circle, and how has this group varied over time? When national identity is hotly contested, what does it mean to experience citizenship as partial, denied, or fully acknowledged? How can the humanities illuminate differing narratives and open up space for understanding, connections, and shared visions of the future?

The Association of American Colleges and Universities and The Democracy Commitment invite faculty, staff, students, and campus community partners to join in one or all of three FREE webinars. These events are designed to expand campus expertise on how to hold constructive conversations about contentious issues and how to institute practices in and out of the classroom that foster engagement across differences.

More information is available here.

A Three-Part Series
3:00–4:00 p.m. Eastern Time

From Fractious Differences to Engaged Dialogues (October 13, 2016)
How can texts and techniques from the humanities disrupt unexamined positions, put human faces to abstract ideas, and help open up spaces where dialogue and consensus might emerge on historic and contemporary questions about citizenship and who deserves it? What models exist for training dialogue facilitators who can help encourage listening and perspective taking across seemingly intractable positions? (Register online)

Income Inequality and the Cost of Citizenship (October 27, 2016)
When economic disparities—often intertwined with ethnic, racial, and religious differences—impose real limitations on public participation, how can the humanities provide insights into the historic and persistent reality of differential access to full citizenship rights? Learn how several campuses have engaged their students and communities in examining this issue. (Register online)

I Want My Country Back: Immigration, Race, and Citizenship (November 3, 2016)
In the midst of sometimes-dramatic demographic and cultural shifts, how have the humanities served to illuminate felt experiences, historical contexts, and ethical issues as the rich mosaic of people in the United States fluctuates? What approaches, courses, and public events lead to shared ends rather than perpetual conflict or feelings of displacement? (Register online)

Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and hosted by the Association of American Colleges and Universities and The Democracy Commitment.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in these webinars do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.