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STARKVILLE, Miss.–Mississippi State’s John C. Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development will commemorate the state’s 1964 Freedom Summer with a Civil Rights Bus Tour.

The Nov. 18-20 university-organized trip is designed to immerse participants in civil rights era experiences by visiting important communities and landmarks. It coincides with the recent Freedom Summer observances and the 50th anniversary of the Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Educational Leadership’s Education Policy Fellowship Program.

Tour admission is $450, with a Nov. 15 registration deadline and limit of 52 participants.

“We want to give this generation of leaders and educators the opportunity to meet and interact with individuals who led and made history through their actions during the civil rights era,” said Tyson Elbert, MSU’s EPFP director.

Museums, memorials and other attractions are included at each stop in Philadelphia and Meridian, Miss., and Selma, Montgomery and Birmingham, Ala. Community members who participated in civil rights-era events in those locales will be on hand at each stop to share their experiences.

Organizers said the tour is geared primarily toward educators and will examine the relevance of past events, changes that have occurred and their impact on future growth. Admission is open to current EPFP and Appalachian Higher Education Network participants and alumni, as well as others with an interest in leadership and civil rights experiences.

The EPFP is a nine-month professional development program that provides emerging leaders in education and related fields with the knowledge and networks to advance the core issues of education policy. Fellows concentrate on public policy, leadership and professional networking while remaining in their full-time positions. They also utilize their current work environment as a context for examining important leadership and policy issues in Mississippi.

Often referred to as Mississippi’s think tank, the Stennis Institute of Government regularly provides technical assistance and consultation to state and local government offices on a wide variety of issues affecting economic and community development.

The tour application may be completed online at www.sig.msstate.edu/documents/EPFP/MSEPFP2013.pdf. For more information, telephone the institute at 662-325-3328.

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