news releases

2005.02.18 > For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Kaldahl - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.3502 - email: tkaldahl@mail.unomaha.edu

Former Congressmen to Visit UNO Starting Feb. 20

Omaha - University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) students will have a unique and rare opportunity to meet two former members of the U.S. House of Representatives next week.  Former members of Congress Jan Meyers and Owen Pickett will spend two days at UNO thanks to the "Congress to Campus Program." Randall Adkins, an associate professor in UNO's political science department, is coordinating the visit. The university's American Democracy Project has sponsored the event.

"The Congress to Campus Program is designed to address several aspects of civic learning for college-age young people, combining traditional educational content with a strong message about taking part in their community and nation's political life," Adkins said.

The program, sponsored by the Stennis Center for Public Service and the Association of Former Members of Congress, sends bipartisan pairs of former members of Congress–one Democrat and one Republican–to visit college, university and community college campuses around the country. 

"It's a unique and exciting opportunity for students and faculty to meet and interact with legislative leaders," Adkins said.

Meyers served from 1985 until 1997 in the Kansas congressional delegation.  Pickett, from Virginia, served seven terms in the U.S. Congress beginning in 1987. 

While on campus, the pair will be visiting with students in a variety of classes or meetings—journalism, public affairs, history, political science, women's studies and Chicano/Latino studies.

"The days are going to be busy, but students will have a variety of opportunities to discuss different issues with them and get their perspective," Adkins said.  "What is especially important is that these two will tell students about what is important about Congress, about the government that political science professors can't teach."

The former congressmen will arrive on Sunday, Feb. 20, and will stay until the afternoon of Wednesday, Feb. 22.  This is the second Congress to Campus visit in Nebraska.

The Stennis Center is a federal, legislative agency created by Congress in 1988 to promote and strengthen public service. 

For more information, call (402) 554-3502.

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