Students will soon be able to publish their own public policy articles at USD.
The Rushmore Public Policy Institution, a new student organization on campus, is looking to publish the work of students.
Junior Dustin Santjer, the group’s founder, said the organization serves multiple purposes.
“(Rushmore Public Policy Institution) is two different things. It is a think tank for undergraduate students. It gets students interested in public policy and research and allows them to talk and write about it,” he said. “It is also a publication for research and other works by students that they want published.”
Santjer founded the organization after hearing of similar programs at other universities throughout the U.S. this past summer.
“I was talking to people from East Coast colleges during my internship and they have a program like this,” Santjer said. “I thought with our political science program here and our connections in South Dakota, we could make this organization thrive.”
Santjer hopes Rushmore will get students involved and interested in politics.
“People need to be aware and educated on what’s going on around them,” he said.
Currently, the framework of the organization is being fleshed out.
Students can write and attend meetings in the meantime if they’re looking to get involved, Santjer said. Students can publish any form of work they’d like with Rushmore Public Policy Institution, and should contact the organization’s team members for more information.
First-year Hanna Varilek said the new organization is a great way for students to get their name out there.
“I think that the ability to publish your own work like thesis’ will really help students,” Varilek said. “It’ll look good on resumes and grab the attention of potential employers.”
After receiving a $300 special appropriation from USD’s Student Government Association on Sept. 22, members of the Rushmore Pubic Policy Institution are able to start building the website, which they hope will be up by the end of the semester.
“Our website will be one way that we will be reaching out to students,” Santjer said. “We will also be reaching out a lot through social media. We found that photo and video content do really well with those who use social media, so we will be using a lot of that. Our goal is to make this site a place where students have content that they can read, is not complicated and is easily digestible for them.”
Though Varilek said she won’t likely publish anything with Rushmore, she believes it will do well at USD.
“There’s a lot of opportunity in the program and for students,” she said. “I think students will like that fact that it allows them to be heard by the public.”
(Photo: SGA members debate the amount of funding to give to the Rushmore Public Policy Institution during a meeting Sept. 15. The organization was given $300 on Sept. 22. Tatum Dean / The Volante)