OXY STUDENT EMILY STROMBORN WORKED FOR THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN IN OHIO
Campaign Semester provides Occidental College students with an opportunity to learn about political campaigns and elections through first-hand experience.
It will provide students with a full semester of college credit (16 units) for volunteering full-time in a Presidential, U.S. Senate, U.S. House, or gubernatorial campaign during the Fall2012 semester. Students can volunteer for a Republican or Democratic campaign, or a "minor" party if the campaign is set up to adequately supervise volunteers. The program is open to all Oxy students, regardless of major. There is no application for Campaign Semester. Students should simply register for Politics 295, 296 and 297. Before registering, however, students should meet with Professor Dreier or Professor Freer to discuss which campaigns they want to work for and to get their approval.
The 2008 elections triggered a high level of excitement and engagement among young Americans. Young people volunteered and voted at unprecedented levels. Will this trend continue in 2012?
The 2012 race for the White House promises to be a spirited contest that will provide voters with a clear choice over different policy agendas. Similarly, there are many key races for Congress occurring in locations considered "swing" or "battleground" states and districts; the partisan balance in both houses of Congress is at stake. The outcome of these elections will have a major impact on the nation's future.
As part of Campaign Semester, students are expected to work full-time (at least 40 hours a week, although in reality they will probably work many more hours) in a presidential, Senate, House, or gubernatorial campaign of their choosing for I 0 weeks during the Fall semester. If they select a presidential campaign, they will be working in the field (not in the national headquarters) in one of the key 10 or 12 "battleground" states. If they select a U.S. Senate, U.S. House, or gubernatorial race, it should also be in a "swing" or "battleground" state, where neither of the major two parties has a decided advantage and the outcome is likely to be close. This will guarantee an exciting campaign that will likely generate considerable media interest, funding, and high turnout. Students' participation will involve a wide range of activities, involving voter registration, turnout, volunteer coordination, media relations, and many other aspects of a typical campaign. In most cases, the campaigns will help students with finding housing. The faculty will help students identify the "swing" or "battleground" races.
After Election Day, students will return to the Occidental campus and participate in a seminar, as well as an independent study course, for the final five weeks of the Fall semester. Professors Dreier and Freer will conduct the seminar and supervise the independent study projects.
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