Day 5: Presidents, Politics, & History

On our final day, our travel day, we still got some sight-seeing in.  Although we had spent considerable time in Norman, we had focused our energies on the University of Oklahoma campus.  Today, we visited the downtown area, where we checked out some of the public art…

Norman_Sculpture_Web…which included more aviation themed work.

Plane_Sculpture_Norman+WebMost interesting, though, was the statue of James Garner, the star of Rockford Files and Maverick, who grew up in Norman, Oklahoma.

James Garner
                            James Garner

Another highlight was, strange as it sounds, was getting to see a train go by…


The real highlight of the day, however, was in Denison, Texas, where we visited the birth-home of Dwight Eisenhower.

Ike's Birthplace
                          Ike’s Birthplace

Eisenhower was born here in 1890, and he would be the last President to be born in the 19th century.    His father worked for the railroad, which passed by about thirty yards in front of the house.

The site is run by the Department of Texas Parks and Wildlife, and we had a knowledgeable tour guide to take us through the home.

Interior of Ike's Home
                     Interior of Ike’s Home

Our visit was made all the more appropriate with the arrival of Veterans Day.

Eisenhower Statue
                        Eisenhower Statue

The last day was also a day for reflecting on the trip and the different things we did.  Heading home, we canvassed the group for our favorite activities, which are presented below.

Favorite Restaurants:

1) Cattleman’s (OKC)
2) Greek House (Norman)
3) The Hideaway (Norman)

Honorable Mention: Coriander Cafe (Norman)

Gyros from Greek House
                Gyros from Greek House

Favorite Artifacts:
1) Abraham Lincoln (Cowboy Hall of Fame and OU Law School)
2) Land Run Monument (OKC)
3) Capitol Artwork (OKC)

Artwork in State Capitol
     Artwork in State Capitol

Favorite Destinations:
1) OU Campus, for OPSA and OU Law School
2) Oklahoma National Memorial and Museum
3) Segway Tour

OU Law Courtroom
                      OU Law Courtroom

Favorite Presentations:
1) Southern Politics, by Scott Buchanan
2) Public Opinion, Drug Use, and Depedence, Lauren Reinke
3) Affordable Health Care, Isaac Lutz

Professor Scott Buchanna
              Professor Scott Buchanan

We were very impressed with Oklahoma City, Norman, and the people we met on the trip.  We’d especially like to thank the organizers of the Oklahoma Political Science Association, who were very helpful to us.

LEAP Center Hosts Mock LSAT

The Center for Law, Engagement, And Politics (LEAP) and The Princeton Review recently hosted a Mock LSAT for Sam Houston State University Pre-Law Students.  The test, which takes about four hours to complete, was an actual exam used by the Law School Admission Council and was professionally scored for the students.  The scores, however, did not count as official scores and were not provided to the Law School Admissions Council.

“The purpose of the mock LSAT,” noted Mike Yawn, Director of the LEAP Center, “is to give students an idea of where they stand, assist them identifying the areas in which they need to improve, and help them feel more comfortable with the testing environment.”

More than forty students devoted their Saturday to taking the exam.  Law School has emerged as one of the more popular post-graduate pursuits on the campus of SHSU.  Since 2005, the number of students applying to law school has doubled, from approximately 60 to 120.  Even more promising, the number of students accepted to law school has almost tripled, rising from approximately 20 to the 50-60 range.

SHSU Students Take LSAT
           SHSU Students Take Mock LSAT

According to the Law School Admissions Council, SHSU is now 141st in the nation—out of 2,774 schools—at producing applicants to law schools.  SHSU recently moved ahead of Rice University, University of North Carolina, Seton Hall, and Loyola on the list.

“We’ve moved ahead rapidly,” noted Yawn.  “We have a Pre-Law minor, numerous faculty with law degrees, and dozens of law-related programs per year.  This is a great University to attend for students interested in pursuing law.”

“It was a challenging test,” observed Jessica Rodriguez, an SHSU Junior and aspiring law student. “It was the second Mock LSAT I’ve taken, and I improved, which is what I was hoping for.  I plan to take the LSAT Prep Course in the spring and take the real thing next fall.”

The Princeton Review will be offering a Prep Course on the campus of SHSU in the spring of 2014, the only such offering in Huntsville over the next year.  For more information on the test, contact Mike Yawn at (936) 294-1456 or at