President George W. Bush signed a bill on December 8, 2004 (Public Law 108-447) that designates every September 17 as Constitution Day. All institutions of higher education that receive federal funding are required to prepare a program to inform students about the U.S. Constitution.
2015 Constitution Day Events
To mark the day in 2015, a number of talks and presentations will take place on the UW campus. All events are free and open to the public.
Realizing the Right to Vote: The Story of Thornburg v. Gingles
Lecture by Professor Dan Tokaji
Noon, Wednesday, September 16
Lubar Commons, UW Law School
Hosted by UW Law School; limited lunch fare provided.
Movie Screening: "Constitution USA: Built to Last?"
7 p.m., Wednesday, September 16
Union South Marquee Theatre
Hosted by Wisconsin Union Directorate, the American Democracy Forum, and UW Law School
Judicial Independence: From Whom?
Lecture by Professor Ryan Owens
10 a.m., Thursday, September 17
Room 7200, UW Law School
Hosted by the American Democracy Forum and UW Law School; fresh fruit and coffee provided.
Voting, Spending, and Our Participatory Constitution
Presentation by Professor Robert Yablon
Noon, Thursday, September 17
Room 2260, UW Law School
Hosted by the American Democracy Forum and UW Law School; limited lunch fare provided.
Constitutional Law Classes
Guests are invited to observe the following constitutional law classes:
Constitutional Law Ⅰ with Professor Asifa Quraishi
10:30–11:50 a.m., Thursday, September 17
Room 3250 , UW Law School
Covers the basic structure of government in the United States, with emphasis on the federal government. Includes the role of the federal courts and the doctrine of judicial review; the rise of federal power, as reflected particularly in shifting definitions of “interstate commerce,” the doctrine of separation of powers, with emphasis on current issues of legislative and executive branch authority; and judicial and other limitations on the exercise of authority by the states. Topic for Constitution Day: Marbury vs. Madison.
Special Problems in Constitutional Law, 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendments with Adjunct Professor Marcus Berghahn
, Thursday, September 17
Room 3247, UW Law School,
This class looks at the constitutional underpinnings of criminal procedure, with a focus on the Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Amendments to the United States Constitution. Topics covered will include a detailed look at confession law, right to counsel issues, guilty, no contest and Alford pleas, motion practice tied to constitutional issues, jury trial, jury trial waivers, and appeal rights. Topic for Constitution Day: Voluntary statements under the Fifth Amendment. Limited seating.
Produced by the National Archives and Records Administration, this site includes a transcript of the Constitution, images of the original document and other facts and background information.
Also produced by the National Archives and Records Administration, this site offers activities, lesson plans and other information for teachers and students at all levels.
This site is produced by the National Constitution Center, and provides more information about Constitution Day along with activities, lesson plans and other resources.