Congress Week
September 12-18, 2010

What is
Congress Week?

The United States Constitution was signed on September 17, 1787. This short document not only recites personal liberties but also lays out the basic functions and structures of government. The event that launched the first experiment in self-governance is now celebrated as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. This is the foundation for Congress Week.

Congress Week is a national initiative that promotes a greater understanding of the Legislative branch of government – critical in the checks and balances outlined in the Constitution. Congress, often the object of scorn, distrust, and low scores in opinion polls, is also poorly understood by the American electorate. The work of Congress cannot be fully appreciated without a forum for civil discourse. Our goals are to encourage civic engagement, inform the community and promote active participation in the political process.

The ACSC, in promoting the study of Congress, has identified themes for Congress Week that invite exploration, discussion, and discovery. This is intended as a coordinated effort at public programming that highlights the functions, relationships, structures, and limitations of the largest elected body in the land. In keeping with the notion that “all politics is local,” ACSC encourages it members nationwide to tailor Congress Weekevents to their own resources and audiences.

Theme: Main Street to Capitol Hill

This is about relationships constituents have with their delegation. Constituents range from the individual citizen and grass roots, single-issue interest groups to lobbyists representing state and local governments or industries and national political action committees. Constituents are everyone and anyone with a need or message to send to their congressional representatives.

How can you participate?

Reach out. Be a speaker. Plan a talk. Teach a class. Create an exhibit. Show a film. Host a panel discussion or reception. Do a podcast. Partner with a non-partisan group. Partner with another department. Engage colleagues. Promote your political collections. Use your imagination.

Are we required to have events approved?
No but ACSC would welcome a description of your activities to post on the website.

Who do I contact with questions?
Jill Severn at or Erin Sloan at

Press Releases:

Congress Week Logos:


Contact us

The Harkin Institute for Public Policy and Citizen Engagement 

Drake University

2507 University Avenue 

Des Moines, IA 50311

© 2019 Association of Centers for the Study of Congress

The ACSC does not release information to third parties except in conjunction with ACSC-sponsored programs.

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