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Close up of the Constitution

Constitution Day

Message from CSI President Dean Fisher

On September 17, 1787, at Constitution Hall in Philadelphia, the Founding Fathers signed the most influential document in American history: the American Constitution. The first ten amendments, now known as the Bill of Rights, were quickly added to define individual liberties.  Our Constitution is often called a “living” document because it has been improved over time.  While not perfect, it has evolved and endured.  For example, in the 1860s, it articulated the end of slavery with the 13th Amendment and the 19th Amendment was added to guarantee women the right vote.  As our nation has improved in its respect for the rights of each person, our Constitution has improved as well.  Despite its limitations, it has been a remarkably durable framework for the United States.  It is a testament to the American people that it has been modified over time with amendments to improve upon what our Founders referred to as “a more perfect union.”

In 2004, the U.S. Congress established each September 17 as Constitution Day.  Among other things, it provides colleges with an opportunity to schedule events and activities that enhance learning about the unique durability of the American Constitution.  We are improved as a society when each of us engages in civic awareness.  Learning about our government and being active participants in our systems is the essence of a government of, by, and for the people. This year, I invite you to review the activities planned by CSI in recognition of Constitution Day and the American Constitution and I hope that you will take an active part in them. 

My thanks go out to Associate Professor of Political Science Perri Gardner for her work in leading the College’s efforts.  Each of you are valued members of the College community, and I hope you’ll find the time to participate.  Additionally, I would encourage each of you to explore the Constitution for yourself:

In English or En Espanol

Best,
Dr. L. Dean Fisher
President

Constitution Day 2021 Events at CSI

  • Constitutions on Campus
    Students can pick up a free copy of the Constitution at the Library, at Student Activities Office, or in Prof Gardner's Office Hours.
  • An Evening of Constitutional Conversation
    Tuesday, September 14th @ 6 p.m. Taylor Room 276/277
    Join the Social Science Department for an evening of Constitutional conversation and pizza. Dr. David Adler of the Alturas Institute will host a talk on the Constitutional challenges following the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks.

  • National Constitution Center’s “State of the Union: Civics” Webinar
    Friday, September, 17th @ 10 a.m.
    NCC President and CEO Jeffrey Rosen will be joined by leaders from government, education, and cultural institutions, including Dr. William R. Hite, superintendent of the School District of Philadelphia, Louise Dubé, executive director of iCivics, and Sal Khan, founder, and CEO of Khan Academy, to discuss the state of civics education in the United States. We will explore the essential skills needed for a robust republic and the tools necessary to promote active and healthy civil discourse in our country today. Panelists will share what their organizations are doing at every level to build guardrails of democracy and support students nationwide.

    Register Here