One of the draws of UConn’s Department of Public Policy (DPP) is its strong alumni network, based in part on the relationships students make in the classroom. Master of Public Policy (MPP) students Ryan Scala and Jacqueline Riberdy recently transformed their classroom collaboration into a professional development experience.
Riberdy, who is interning at Everyday Democracy, enlisted Scala to host a webinar on the importance of redistricting for the CT Civic Ambassadors. The CT Civic Ambassadors was formed out of the Civic Ambassador Initiative and are a group of people who want to improve civic health in their communities by finding ways to engage community members in civic participation. Everyday Democracy supports civic ambassadors by hosting educational presentations that inform members on how to promote civic engagement in the topic presented.
When deciding on a topic of interest to civic ambassadors, Riberdy considered redistricting as it only happens once a decade. has significant ramifications on elections, especially for people of color. She also knew that Scala had been involved with the redistricting process and had an abundance of knowledge regarding its importance in our elections, and he gladly accepted her request to host a webinar on the topic. Scala presented on how the redistricting process works in different states, what gerrymandering is and how to recognize it, what criteria are used when drawing districts, and how to get involved with Connecticut’s redistricting. Everyday Democracy was impressed with the collaboration between Riberdy and Scala as students and professionals, and the event was a success! You can watch the recording of the webinar on Everyday Democracy’s YouTube page