Constitution Crash Course celebrates day of its adoption

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On Constitution Day, Sept. 17 senior psychology major Corey Nack held a crash course about the Constitution in order to learn more about the history of the nation and how it can affect its future.

Photo by Macy Judd.

The course was made up of three lectures from Instructor of History and  Political Science David Root, Assistant Professor  of History and Political Science Laura Merrifield Wilson and Visiting Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religion Jeffrey Tolly.

The day marked 231 years since the nation first adopted the document and started putting in its policies. To celebrate it, Nack said he decided he wanted to learn more about what it really means.

Constitution Crash Course was put together by Nack and Wilson. Nack said that Wilson was interested in putting on an event similar to the one he had in mind, and decided to work together to make the event a success.

“[The Constitution] has profound impacts on our history, our future, in terms of how our identities as Americans are shaped, how our government interacts with its people and other governments … The more knowledge you have with you the better you’ll be able to do,” Nack said. “So we really want to equip people to be more civically engaged and it will make a difference in the community.”

Wilson had other professors from the university get involved as well, including Root and Tolly. Each of the three got time to speak on a topic. Wilson chose to present about how the Constitution has changed and what it looks like today in government. Root spoke about how the government balances itself and how it can be effective, Tolly explained the basics of the document and how the founding fathers thought ahead and proposed solutions to the problems they created.

Junior political science major Emma Kieffer said she attended because she had an interest in the event ever since she heard about it. She said she took a course in high school that was related to the Constitution and was intrigued by the topic of the event. Kieffer said that, after having all of the speakers in class, she was intrigued to learn more about the constitution and its history.

“I knew as soon as I saw that there was a constitution crash course that I would be here, even before I knew the speakers,” Kieffer said.

Photo by Macy Judd.

Visiting Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religion Jeffrey Tolly and Assistant Professor of History and Political Science Laura Merrifield Wilson answered questions from the crowd at the end of the course, held on September 17. All four members of the panel wore party hats to celebrate the adoption of the Constitution.

The event concluded with handouts of mini-Constitutions as well as a question and answer panel. Nack did not know how the event would turn out, but he said that, either way, a message was spread to at least some of the attendees.

“If one person comes and learns something new it’ll be a success, and if 100 people come and learn new things it’ll be a success,” Nack said.

Nack said he plans to do more events like the crash course, including lectures on the last Monday of each month. Topics will be chosen for the talks through a poll he will send out through email. Those interested can contact to learn more. The goal is to educate students through presentations and through the interaction with each other.

“We’re working really hard to come up with a wide variety of activities, things you can learn, things that you might not always get the opportunity to learn,” Nack said. “We just want people to come out of college extremely well rounded and educated on any topic.”

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