For Immediate Release — Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2006


Mary E. McCrank

Media Relations Officer

(585) 245-5516

SUNY Geneseo's American Democracy Project to offer Civic Engagement Week events Feb. 13-17

GENESEO, N.Y. — A lecture by a judge, a reporter for The New York Times, a discussion about social entrepreneurship, a screening of a political thriller and a panel filled with students who helped the victims of Hurricane Katrina, round out this year's Civic Engagement Week at the State University of New York at Geneseo.

Geneseo's American Democracy Project (ADP) holds the annual Civic Engagement Week to encourage students to become involved with their community. This year, the week runs from Feb. 13-17. All events are free and open to the public. 

Here is a listing of the weeklong events:

Monday, Feb. 13

7 p.m., 213 Milne Library

"The Contender"

"The Contender" is a political thriller film that takes the audience behind the scenes of political power plays in Washington, D.C., between Congress and the White House. View the film and join and participate in a lively discussion with faculty from the history department: Kathleen Mapes and Joseph Cope, assistant professors of history.

Tuesday, Feb. 14

12:45 p.m., MacVittie College Union Ballroom

"A Perspective on State and Local Courts"

The Honorable Richard C. Wesley, U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Judge

Are you confused by the court system and how issues and cases are brought to final resolution? If so, you are not alone. Wesley has experience as a state legislator, as a judge on the New York Court of Appeals (the top court in New York) and was appointed by President Bush with unanimous consent of the Senate as a federal judge. 

Wednesday, Feb. 15

7 p.m., SUNY Brockport Metro Center, 55 St. Paul St., Rochester

"The Role of the Media in Strengthening Democracy"

David Carr, columnist for The New York Times

Presented in conjunction with the SUNY Brockport American Democracy Project

Carr writes a column for the Monday Business section of The New York Times that focuses on media issues, including print, digital, film, radio and television. He also works as a general assignment reporter, covering all aspects of popular culture, for the Culture section. For the past 25 years, Carr has written about media as it intersects with business, culture and government. Prior to arriving at The Times, he was a contributing writer for The Atlantic Monthly and New York magazine, writing articles that covered issues ranging from homeland security to a profile of Harvey Weinstein. Following his presentation, Carr will field questions from the audience.

Geneseo will provide free bus transportation for students. The bus will depart at 6 p.m. from the MacVittie College Union. Tickets are available at the MacVittie College Union Ticket Office. After the lecture, students will go to Spot Coffee in the East End, where they can discuss the lecture, drink free coffee and eat pastry courtesy of the Division of Student and Campus Life.

Thursday, Feb. 16

12:45 p.m., MacVittie College Union Ballroom

"Criminal Justice and Families: Creating a Chemical Reaction for Change"

Carol Shapiro, founder and director of Family Justice

Shapiro will talk about social entrepreneurship, using Family Justice as an example. Established in 1996 in a storefront on New York's Lower East Side, Family Justice has been recognized for its award-winning, evidence-based practice at La Bodega de la Familia. Family Justice draws on the unique strengths of the family and neighborhoods to break cycles of involvement with the criminal justice system by working with government agencies, the private sector and local partners to provide direct services, consulting and training in its methods, and to serve as a resource for public policy makers and the criminal justice system.

Friday, Feb. 17

1:30 p.m., 114 MacVittie College Union

Livingston CARES

Students who participated in January's Livingston CARES work trip to Harrison County, Miss., will talk about their experiences working on the hurricane recovery efforts. Panelists: Christopher Basso, James Bryant, Casey Carrigan, Amanda Gitomer, Kevin Reilly, Tegan Serianni, Laura Shelhammer, Kristy Sirianni and George Sullivan.

Civic Engagement Week is an important component of the Geneseo American Democracy Project's efforts to promote intellectual and experiential understandings of civic engagement. The project involves faculty, students and staff, and was formed in 2003 as an original member of the national American Democracy Project. The national project, developed by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) in collaboration with The New York Times, focuses on the development of informed graduates who are committed to lives of engagement as citizens in our democracy and currently involves 183 campuses representing 1.7 million students nationwide. For more about the Geneseo ADP, please see