About Private College Scholars at the Capitol

Purpose: PCSAC helps members of the Minnesota Legislature and the governor understand the important role that involving undergraduates in research plays in their educational and professional development. It affords legislators the opportunity to meet outstanding students — future leaders — who are products of the Minnesota private colleges and universities system.

Campus Contact Persons: Campus contact persons, designated faculty or staff members at each institution, help publicize the event on their campus and coordinate student selection. They also register participants and send the registration fee to MPCC.

Participants: The Minnesota Private College Scholars at the Capitol will display, in poster format, the work of 25-30 exceptional undergraduates from Minnesota's 17 private colleges and universities.

Selecting Participants: The nature of the selection process is the jurisdiction of individual colleges and universities. All academic disciplines are welcome, from art to zoology. Our hope is to present the breadth and depth of undergraduate research and creative scholarship at Minnesota's private schools. Historically, the sciences have been generously represented so we encourage campus representatives to consider the full range of disciplines. In addition to meeting the standard of quality research, we ask recommenders to consider a student's ability to communicate effectively.

Registering Participants: Each campus representative may nominate two students by completing the registration form here. Depending on the number of students registered by the deadline, campus representatives may have the opportunity to nominate additional students and will be notified to do so. Selection for additional presenters will be decided on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Registration deadline: November 15, 2013

Publicity: Campus contact persons at each college/university help to publicize the event on their home campus. Ask the campus PR department to notify the student's hometown paper. Some papers have written articles before or after the event. After the event deliver abstract booklets "to the right people" on your campus.

By January 31, students should contact their House and Senate member and arrange an appointment for a visit. This visit should be done between 9:45 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. to present them with a copy of the abstract booklet and personally invite them to view your poster.

It is IMPORTANT that you write your home district state legislators (not your federal representatives) and invite them to Scholars at the Capitol AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. Below is a sample letter you can download, personalize and use to contact them; remember to change the information in parentheses to reflect your college, hometown, etc. You may print the letter on personal stationery or the letterhead of your college/university. If you are not a Minnesota resident, please write and invite state legislators who represent your college or university's district. Again, it is your STATE House and Senate members that you need to contact. We will also be inviting the Governor and all private college and university presidents.

An excellent web site you can use to identify your home district legislators and locate mailing addresses can be found at www.vote-smart.org.

Private College Scholars at the Capitol sample letter

Sample letter to personalize and send to a legislator.