Wrapping up in Austin

Capitol Tour on Sine Die

by Jade Jones

The big day has finally come! The 2021 New Politics Forum Campaign Bootcamp has concluded, and the LEAP Ambassadors headed out to tour yet another historical facet of Texas, the State Capitol.

Amidst the buzz and excitement of Sine Die—the conclusion of the legislative session—the Ambassadors toured  and learned a great deal about the historic building.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Sam Houston, Texas Capitol Building

We enjoyed seeing where the former Supreme Court was located and hearing our voice echo in the rotunda.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Sam Houston, Texas Capitol Building

We even got to visit the chambers of House of Representatives and the Senate!

I particularly enjoyed learning about the important historical context of many prominent figures that were distinguished in portraits throughout the Capitol. There included people such as former Governor Ann Richards, Tennessean David Crockett, and our university namesake, Sam Houston.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Sam Houston, Texas Capitol Building

While Quinn was especially familiar with the Texas Capitol, this was the first time for Jessica, Yvette, and me, so we had some fun.

I was in awe the entire time, as I was learning the history of my state in a most prestigious classroom. Furthermore, I was overwhelmed with the knowledge that I was on grounds where decisions are made that affect the day-to-day life and wellbeing of myself and people throughout the state. My favorite part of the entire tour of the Capitol my favorite part was learning more about various former governors and visiting the Texas House of Representatives and Senate Chambers.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Sam Houston, Texas Capitol Building

It was a great history lesson, while also getting to see current affairs. We saw some action on the House and Senate floor, while also seeing Rep. Senfronia Thompson and other lawmakers.

And, outside, we even saw some protesters.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Sam Houston, Texas Capitol Building

It was a real treat for us, and with some discussion from Professor Yawn, we learned about ways to return as interns…

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Sam Houston, Texas Capitol Building

Author: mikeyawn

Mike Yawn teaches at Sam Houston State University. In the past few years, he has taught courses on Politics & Film, Public Policy, the Presidency, Media & Politics, Congress, Statistics, Research & Writing, Field Research, and Public Opinion. He has published academic papers in the Journal of Politics, Political Behavior, Social Security Quarterly, Film & History, American Politics Review, and contributed a chapter to the textbook Politics and Film. He also contributes columns, news analysis, and news stories to newspapers such as the Houston Chronicle, San Antonio Express News, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Stamford Advocate, Greenwich Time, Huron Daily Tribune, Laredo Morning Times, Beaumont Enterprise, Connecticut Post, and Midland Reporter Telegram. Yawn is also active in his local community, serving on the board of directors of the local YMCA and Friends of the Wynne. Previously, he served on the Huntsville's Promise and Stan Musial World Series Boards of Directors. In 2007-2008, Yawn was one of eight scholars across the nation named as a Carnegie Civic Engagement Scholar by the Carnegie Foundation.

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