A Message from the Chancellor
"We the People of the United States." What powerful words those are. With that simple beginning, the U.S. Constitution sets forth the rights and privileges of American citizenship and establishes in writing the democratic principles that have guided our country for more than two hundred years.
In 2004, the Congress enacted a law requiring all educational institutions receiving federal funding to educate its students about the Constitution each year on September 17, which has been declared Constitution Day. Although we celebrate Constitution Day once a year, at the University of Kansas we educate our students about the democracy in which we live every day.
When I became Chancellor of KU in 1995, I distributed a document university-wide called "The 10 Characteristics of a Great University." The first characteristic is that a great university welcomes all peoples, respecting their differences, while teaching tolerance for each human being; a great American university demonstrates the value of a democratic way of life, thereby ensuring a democratic future. This point underlies every value that the University of Kansas holds dear.
This website will provide you with an overview of the U.S. Constitution, its history, its signers, its debaters, and its principles. It will lead you to other links to learn even more. I encourage you to study the Constitution and to understand how critical it is to our way of life and our government today.