First year foundation students are all required to take a Social Welfare Policy course during the second quarter, and I was lucky enough to get one of the best professors! Dr. Mike Cortes (check him out here, really, he’s great: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/faculty/facultypages/cortes.html) has had a lot of experience doing community organizing and directly influenced policy during the beginning of his career, so he is a wealth of knowledge! He is also a great resource, and was able to get some of his students (including me!) into a grassroots advocacy training event at the state capital building this past friday!
The event was “Legislative Education and Advocacy Day” led by Mental Health America of Colorado and was all about policy issues affecting mental health and human services. It was really informative, and I was even able to eat lunch with some state legislators afterwards, as well as meet the former First Lady of Colorado! You can see the event here: http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=vfoab8bab&oeidk=a07e372wtjz3b5ffc52
The event is annual, and visiting a policy event is mandatory for this class, so I’d highly recommend it if you’re in Denver next February!