Press Release for Tuesday, March 19, 2002

Forum Planned on Decline in Civic Involvement

Decline of Civic Involvement Subject of UNF Forum

JACKSONVILLE – Leaders from a cross section of metro organizations will gather on the University of North Florida campus next month to explore whether there has been a decline in civic involvement in America.

The April 10 forum organized by the UNF Institute of Government, is designed to involve a group of citizens in a discussion of the level of civic involvement both nationally and in our area and what can be done to influence those levels.

The perception is that the level of civic involvement surged after Sept. 11, according to Sarah Monroe, an organizer of the conference. Whether that perception is accurate and if so how long lasting an effect the disaster will have is a topic of discussion, Monroe said.

The keynote speaker for the event is Dr. Sherry Magill, the executive director of the Jesse Ball du Pont Fund.

A number of panel discussions will be conducted with representatives from a variety of organizations including the Duval County Council of PTAs, Tots ‘n’ Teens, the Springfield Preservation and Restoration Association, the United Way of Northeast Florida, the Sierra Club, the South Jacksonville Rotary Club, the Jacksonville Women’s Center and Fresh Ministries.

The panels will be moderated by Dr. Matthew Corrigan, an assistant professor in UNF’s Department of Political Science and Public Administration; Dr. Carolyn Williams of UNF’s History Department and Dr. Andrew Buchwalter, chair of UNF’s Philosophy Department and director of the UNF Center for Ethics, Public Policy and the Professions.

In all, more than 16 metro civic organizations are sponsoring the forum.

The forum is made possible through a grant from the Florida Humanities Council. The Jacksonville forum is part of a state-wide program. Similar forums also will be conducted in Tallahassee and Fort Lauderdale. These forums are organized by the Florida Institute of Government at Florida State University and Florida Atlantic University.

The Jacksonville forum begins at 8:30 a.m. at the University Center. For more information or to register, contact the Institute of Government at 620-2844.