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American Democracy Project



ADP logo

The American Democracy Project (ADP) is a network of more than 250 state colleges and universities focused on public higher education’s role in preparing the next generation of informed, engaged citizens for our democracy.

ADP was established in 2003 as a nonpartisan initiative of the American Association of State Colleges Universities (AASCU); the University of Central Missouri joined the following year. 

The project grows out of a concern about decreasing rates of participation in the civic life of America in voting, in advocacy, in local grassroots associations, and in other forms of civic engagement that are necessary for the vitality of our democracy.

Focusing on the development of informed graduates who are committed to lives of engagement as citizens in our democracy, the American Democracy Project rests on a core belief: that civic engagement is critical for the preservation and vitality of American democracy.



Engaged Learning for an Engaged Citizenry

At UCM, the American Democracy Project's purpose is to create opportunities for students to participate in an intellectual and experiential understanding of civic engagement.  ADP sponsors and co-sponsors a variety of programs and events each year which provide campus community members the opportunity to learn about, discuss, and engage in contemporary socio-political issues, voter mobilization, and community service.

ADP programs and activities are organized by the Campus Coordinator and Student Coordinator under the guidance and recommendations of a Steering Committee, with faculty and student representatives from each of the academic colleges.

ADP Sponsored Events

Constitution Week

On September 17, 1787, the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia held their final meeting, and signed the Constitution of the United States of America. Each year, the University of Central Missouri commemorates this defining moment in American history with a series of events and activities. 

2023 Constitution Week - September 18-22

Fall 2023 ADP Constitution Week Flyer

Unity Week Keynote

Each year in February the American Democracy Project hosts a speaker as part of Unity Week.

Current Chatter

Current Chatter

Each month ADP sponsors an informal faculty/staff facilitated dialogue about a contemporary issue.  The topic changes monthly.


Co-Sponsored Events

Take Back Your Time


Each year in October, we take a day to recognize that individuals are overworked and schedules are so overloaded that society’s health and relationships are at risk.  This day is focused on setting aside time for self, family, friends, and wellness. As part of the event, a peace tree is decorated with individual’s wishes and dreams.

Pursuit of Happiness

Pursuit of Happiness


Every year in April, we celebrate Pursuit of Happiness day on the anniversary of Thomas Jefferson’s birth. The day features a variety of programs and activities and is co-sponsored with the Social Work program.

An award is given on Pursuit of Happiness Day to a faculty or staff member that goes beyond the call of duty to make others happy.

One Campus One Book

One Campus One Book


One Campus, One Book is a common reading program at UCM whose purpose is to engage all of our students and campus community in a shared, academically-driven experience. This initiative is intended to bring meaningful conversations on relevant, complex subjects beyond the classroom and into students' daily lives. The program culminates in a campus visit by the book's author.

Apply for a Grant

Apply for a Grant

Each year, ADP co-sponsors a variety of programs and activities through the awarding of grants to interested faculty, staff, and students. Grants are awarded in the fall.

Apply for a grant


Register to Vote

Click below to learn how to register to vote.


Register to Vote

Steering Committee

The Campus Coordinator and Student Coordinator work with the Steering Committee to plan, organize, and evaluate the programs and activities that ADP sponsors each year. The committee includes faculty and student representatives from each college.

If you're interested in becoming an ADP steering committee member, reach out to Please include whether you are a faculty or student, and your academic college.


American Democracy Project

Dr. Shari Bax
Vice President, Student Experience and Engagement
Administration Building, Room 214
Tel: (660)543-4618


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