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Certificate Presentation

Constitution Day

Purdue’s Constitution Day Celebration includes participation from community organizations such as the League of Women Voters, interactive exhibits about the Constitution, and Jeopardy-style Quiz Off games between competing panels of Purdue students and local community leaders. The annual event is held in the Great Hall of Purdue Memorial Union and the adjoining PMU 118.

Public Law 108-477 contained in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2005 stated that “each educational institution that receives Federal funds for a fiscal year shall hold an educational program on the United States Constitution” as close to the anniversary of the signing of the Constitution, September 17, as possible. In 2005, Purdue President Martin Jischke invited the Ackerman Center to coordinate Purdue’s celebration of Constitution Day. The Ackerman Center embraces this opportunity to encourage citizens in our community to reflect on and learn more about the Constitution.

Holocaust Remembrance Play

Greater Lafayette Holocaust Remembrance Conference (GLHRC) Educator Workshop

Purdue University’s James F. Ackerman Center for Democratic Citizenship continues to sponsor student and educators’ programs as part of the annual Greater Lafayette Holocaust Remembrance Conference. The Conference is held in April of each year and includes scholarly presentations, panel discussions, student presentations, film screenings, and an educator workshop around a topic related to the Holocaust. “Holocaust education is a clear case of learning from history in order to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past. An important step in preventing the future occurrence of such atrocities is for current generations to learn the lessons of the Holocaust” said Phillip J. VanFossen, director of the Ackerman Center.

The Educator Workshop is provided at NO COST for upper elementary through secondary teachers to support teaching related to the Holocaust. The theme and content vary but include relevant materials and content for both social studies and literature teachers.

The GLHRC also sponsors the Engel awards, supported by the Ackerman Center, which is a small grant program to help teachers fund resources or experiences to support teaching about the Holocaust or related ideas such as cultural diversity and civic engagement.

Visit the GLHRC website for more information about the program for this year, the Engel awards application, and to register for the workshop.

Panel Presentation

Project Citizen

Based on the award-winning curriculum from the Center for Civic Education (Calabas, CA), Project Citizen is a civic education competition where teams of students address a local problem, develop an action plan to address the problem and then make a presentation on the plan. In the last three years, several hundred middle and high school students from local schools have participated in Project Citizen competitions.

The Ackerman Center conducts and sponsors workshops for teachers and students, as well as organizes the showcase where student groups present their projects in a simulated public hearing. Ackerman Center staff will work with individual teachers or school teams to provide textbooks and training to implement Project Citizen. Judges for the Project Citizen showcase included local politicians, lawyers, judges, Purdue and Ivy Tech faculty, and media representatives.

Would you like to schedule a NO COST Project Citizen workshop at your school or request curriculum materials? Contact the Ackerman Center for more information and scheduling.

Ken Burns Lecture

Lecture Series

The Purdue Series on Corporate Citizenship and Ethics is the result of a unique collaboration between the Purdue University College of Education and the Krannert School of Management with support from the Purdue Federal Credit Union. Speakers chosen from a variety of disciplines will investigate the various aspects of business ethics and the role citizens play in corporate ethics, providing a well-rounded overview of the effects of corporate ethics upon business, the economy, and society as a whole.

Teachers with resource books

Professional Development for Teachers

The Ackerman Center’s Professional Development programming supports K-12 educators to implement high quality social studies, civics, or economics education in the classroom. The Center provides multiple formats of professional development including an evening series during the school year and a Summer Institute as a week-long intensive workshop on a specific topic. The goal of our programming is to support elementary and secondary teachers to develop classroom-ready instructional strategies and activities focused on the skills and dispositions associated with citizenship. Past topics have included Creating Digital Content for the Social Studies Classroom, Incorporating Social Studies into the 90-minute Literacy Block and Citizenship Literacy. Learn more about our current Professional Development offerings >

Contact the Ackerman Center at (765) 494-4755 or by email at amurphyk@purdue.edu.