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Dartmouth College Office of Public Affairs • Press Release
Dartmouth undergraduates are learning first-hand what's needed to make decisions in state government. In a course called Introduction to Public Policy Research, the students take on real-world issues to inform representatives of state government. The course, taught by Ron Shaiko, associate director of Dartmouth's Rockefeller Center, is part of Rockefeller's initiative called the Policy Research Shop, or PRS. The PRS is a nonpartisan operation staffed by undergraduate students who provide quality, objective research to the New Hampshire and Vermont state legislatures.
"I think the students appreciate working on current, timely issues, and they feel that their reports contribute to the legislative process," says Shaiko.
On Friday, Dec. 1, three Dartmouth students who had taken Shaiko's course this past fall testified before the New Hampshire House of Representatives Voluntary Retirement Savings Working Group, chaired by Rep. Laurie Harding, in Concord, N.H. The students are Kahlie Dufresne, a member of the Class of 2009, Maia Fedyszyn, an '07, and Peter Chau, an '08. The students will continue to work on the project during the winter term in the PRS and will return to Concord in January to present their final report.
On Tuesday, Dec. 5, three additional students from Shaiko's course testified before the Vermont Next Generation Commission, which was formed by the state legislature to investigate ways of keeping young Vermonters in the state following graduation from high school. The students, Sean Garren, a member of the Class of 2007, Jarrett Cato, also an '07, and Elise Braunschweig, an '08, produced a preliminary report for the commission on potential career education programs for elementary and middle schools students in Vermont. The students will continue to work on their project this winter and will return to Montpelier to present their final report.
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