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Updated 10:00 AM September 8, 2008




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Multimedia project aims to engage youth, politics

Young people will have the opportunity to get involved in the upcoming election through a multimedia project that gives participants a chance to let their voices be heard, says Edward Bagale, vice chancellor for government relations at U-M-Dearborn.

The core of the project, called "MiVote," is an interactive Web site at that will "enable U-M-Dearborn students and others to upload videos that will explain to our presidential candidates what they should know about Michigan and its citizens," says Dave Manney, director of program development at Detroit Public Television, a partner in the project.

The Web site is only part of the effort. Participants in MiVote also will be seen and heard on Detroit Public Television and other media outlets in the weeks leading to the election. At the end of October an on-campus town hall meeting will address the issues raised by young people in the course of the project. The meeting will be broadcast on Channel 56.

Faculty members at U-M-Dearborn are exploring ways to use the project in their classes this fall.

"This is a site that can be utilized for courses and assignments beyond the obvious choices of political science and communications," says Jonathan Smith, professor of English and associate dean of the College of Arts, Sciences and Letters.

"It's easy to imagine the widest range of our courses — composition, health policy studies, American studies, environmental science, economics, women's and gender studies, sociology and international studies — involved in this project, whether through student contributions to the site or analyses of the materials it will contain."

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