Dole Institute announces early spring programming

LAWRENCE — The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas has announced the the first half of its spring 2024 programming lineup, featuring a series on world leaders in wartime; the return of visiting fellows from the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, D.C.; the annual A Conversation on Race program; a student-led program on the 2023 Kansas Speaks opinion survey; and the annual Easter Egg Roll.

Fort Leavenworth Series

This semester’s programs begin at 3 p.m. Feb. 7 with the first installment of the Fort  Leavenworth Series. The Dole Institute will continue its partnership with the Command and General Staff College’s Department of Military History at Fort Leavenworth to host the Fort Leavenworth Series throughout the year. The series provides free historical lectures to the public facilitated by world-class military history professors.

The 2024 series theme is “World Leaders in Wartime” and will explore influential wartime leaders from medieval times to the present, detailing their achievements and military service. Lectures are scheduled at 3 p.m. for the first Wednesday of each month.

  • Feb. 7: “George Marshall” with Bill Nance
  • March 6: “Winfield Scott and Joint Warfare in 1847-1848” with Lt. Colonel Nathan Jennings
  • April 3: “King Henry II, King of England” with John Hosler
  • May 1: “William McKinley” with Amanda Nagel
  • June 5: “Chiang Kai-Shek & Mao Zedong” with Geoff Babb
  • Aug: 7: “George Washington & the Whiskey Rebellion” with Shawn Faulkner
  • Sept. 4: “Winston Churchill” with Dave Cotter
  • Oct. 2: “Augustus the Strong: Elector of Saxony” with Ethan Rafuse
  • Nov. 6: “Abraham Lincoln” with Harry Laver
  • Dec. 4: “Vladimir Putin” with Sean Kalic.

Spring programs

At 10 a.m. Feb. 8, the Dole Institute will present “Grappling with the Nation’s Pressing Fiscal Challenges” in partnership with the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC). This program features visiting fellows from the BPC, Rachel Snyderman, director of economic policy, and Emily Wielk, economic policy analyst. Snyderman and Wielk will break down what’s at stake and why fiscal policy will remain front and center in the coming years.

The institute’s annual A Conversation on Race program, moderated by Barbara Ballard, senior associate director, will take place in late February. Guest speakers include Shawn Alexander, professor and chair of KU's Department of African & African-American Studies, and Deborah Dandridge, associate librarian, field archivist and curator of African American Experience Collections for the Spencer Research Library.

This spring’s Student Advisory Board Program, “Kansas Speaks: The Crossroads of Policy and Public Opinion,” will feature guests Kansas Speaks Policy Fellow Alexandra Middlewood as well as state Reps. Christina Haswood and Nick Hoheisel, two legislative members of the Kansas Future Caucus.

The program at 7 p.m. March 25 will include a discussion on insights from the 2023 Kansas Speaks public opinion survey, which is produced by the Docking Institute of Public Affairs at Fort  Hays State University. The survey addresses issues such as marijuana legalization, Medicaid expansion, abortion rights, climate change and more. This event will explore crucial topics affecting young people and the wider community in Kansas, combining data-driven insights from the survey with real-world experiences and legislative perspectives. This program is presented by the Dole Institute Student Advisory Board (SAB) and moderated by SAB Coordinator Allie Haggar.

Easter Egg Roll with Dole

Finally, save the date for the Lawrence family-favorite tradition of the Easter Egg Roll with Dole from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 30. The event will feature an egg rolling race, inspired by the White House Easter Egg Roll, egg hunt, bunny corral, live music, story time, crafts and more.

“Our early spring programming slate features timely conversations about leadership and policy development,” said Audrey Coleman, Dole Institute director. “The Dole Institute is proud to work with the Command General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, the D.C.-based Bipartisan Policy Center, Kansas legislators and many others for engaging discussions representing a variety of viewpoints.”

Detailed information on programs can be found at All programs will take place in-person at the Dole Institute and be live-streamed on the institute’s website and YouTube channel. Additional spring programing will be announced in the coming weeks.

Fri, 02/02/2024


Maria Fisher

Media Contacts

Maria Fisher

Dole Institute of Politics