Fostering preparation for living as citizens requires experience with civic and political engagement at local, state, and national levels. The Political Engagement Project (PEP) began at Ferris State University in 2006, to provide curricular and co-curricular opportunities to learn, in safe settings, about the range of political responses to the problems facing our society at that time. In 2006, the U.S. was entering its 5th year of war in Afghanistan and Iraq. We had students going off to, or coming home from, service in these wars. In Michigan, ballot proposals included Affirmative Action and dove hunting. Certainly, today our political climate is even more volatile and complicated to navigate. PEP still strives to provide students tools to discover their place in the political process and how to be effective there.
- To assist students in the process of political participation through voting, campaigning, and advocacy.
- To educate students on the issues, structures, and perspectives critical to American politics.
- To guide students in developing the critical and analytical skills required to understand complex, contentious, political disagreements.
- To provide experiences that turns students into active, lifelong participants in the political process.
PEP Scholars is a small cohort of students, coordinated by Professor David Takitaki, that provides a developmental program for direct training and experience in Political Education and Professional Political work opportunities. These areas will include opportunities for internships and independent study, as well as informal learning opportunities for students interested in Political Science and/or Government. PEP Scholars will be responsible for researching and guiding political education activities for the campus, as a whole.
PEP Colloquium and Issues Series
PEP will provide a series of campus colloquia, speakers, educational events, and public candidate debates for broad campus discussions. These events will be posted on the Campus Calendar and on the PEP Facebook page. Faculty are encouraged to ask their students to attend these events. Christian Peterson oversees these activities and coordinates collaboration with the PEP Scholars and PEP Coordinator.