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Programs & Events

In concert with our foundational fellowship program, the institute sponsors a variety of programs and events.


Be a Changemaker: Your Right to Petition the Government

The Institute for Ethics and Public Life invites you to take part in SUNY Plattsburgh’s annual observance of Constitution Day.

To mark the day, SUNY Plattsburgh in conjunction with other SUNY campuses including Cortland, Oswego, Old Westbury, Buffalo State, and Nassau Community College, as well as representatives of the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, will be hosting a series of educational and participatory sessions with political leaders, staff members, advocates, and activists exploring the First Amendment right to petition the government for the redress of grievances. With next year’s presidential election rapidly approaching, it is important for us to understand how we can make our voices and our votes count.

This year’s observation of Constitution Day consists of four sessions:

  • Keynote (10–11:15 a.m.): “From Student to State Rep: My Advocacy Journey.” Massachusetts State Rep. Natalie Higgins
  • Advocacy Panel (11:30 a.m.–12:45 p.m.): A Q&A session with advocates and government officials across party lines including SUNY Plattsburgh grad. Adam Saccardi, ’15, Director of Constituent Services for U.S. Representative Nick LaLota (R, NY-1).
  • Advocacy Workshop (1–2:15 p.m.): A chance for students to work with facilitators in breakout sessions to learn more about how to engage in effective advocacy on issues of importance to them.
  • Voter Registration Rush (2:30–3:45 p.m.): Students can get on-line help registering to vote.

The Thomas Moran Seminar Room (Hawkins 233) will be open for individuals interested in viewing the keynote and the advocacy Panel without registering.

Observance of Constitution Day is required of public institutions of higher learning that receive federal funds. As such, SUNY Plattsburgh, through its Institute for Ethics in Public Life, has led educational activities to mark this occasion every September since the establishment of Constitution Day by Congress in 2004. 

The Institute for Ethics in Public Life is a program of SUNY Plattsburgh with additional support made possible through generous gifts to the Plattsburgh College Foundation.

For more info, contact professors Daniel Lake [email protected] or Ben Medeiros [email protected]


Recordings of many of the following programs may be found on our YouTube playlist: Visit the Institute on Ethics in Public Life

We also encourage you to follow us on Facebook for information on current programming. 

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