Two Macalester Students Finalists at National Competition
April 04, 2011
St. Paul, Minn. – Rosie Glenn-Finer ’13, of San Francisco, Calif., and Rachel Lochner ’13 of Eagan, Minn., were selected as one of five finalist teams at the 2011 Debating for Democracy National Conference in New York City sponsored by Project Pericles. Debating for Democracy is a program in which students research, develop, and advocate public policy positions.
Glenn-Finer and Lochner wrote a policy letter to Minnesota Senator Richard J. Cohen regarding the need for comprehensive mental health education for middle and high school students in Minnesota. A national panel evaluated policy letters from the 29 colleges within the Project Pericles consortium and chose Glenn-Finer and Lochner's letter as one of the five finalists. Macalester is part of the Project Pericles consortium.
"The conference provided an incredible opportunity to meet other civically and politically engaged students from around the country, and participate in meaningful discussions regarding the policy issues important to them and their communities,” said Glenn-Finer and Lochner.
They presented and defended their proposal to former U.S. Senators Nancy Kassebaum Baker and Harris Wofford; former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Constance Berry Newman; and former mayor of Baltimore, Md., Kurt Schmoke.
Glenn-Finer and Lochner said the presentation enhanced their liberal arts education by merging academics with community involvement. “Our presentation has allowed us to learn more about the role of public policy in social issues.”
At the conference, students participated in workshops and panel discussions on social action, democracy and technology, the federal budget, income inequality, and the role of non-profits.
The two sophomores received positive feedback from conference attendees and presenters. They accepted a $500 award toward their advocacy work with mental health.
The other student teams were from Hendrix, Swarthmore, Carleton, and Allegheny Colleges. The Carleton team won.
Project Pericles is a not-for-profit organization that encourages and facilitates commitments by colleges and universities to include social responsibility and participatory citizenship as essential elements of their educational programs.
Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 1,958 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism and civic engagement. Learn more at macalester.edu