Introducing Friends of the Institute

As a tribute to Senator Kennedy's 47-year career, gifts of $47 and up recognize you as a Friend of the Institute.

Educational Experiences

Facilitated Virtual School Programs


The Kennedy Institute is offering live virtual programs, facilitated by Institute staff, for the 2020-2021 school year. Participants will join a video conference for an interactive virtual program that invites students to delve into and discuss important national issues. All programs include a pre-program technology check, supporting resources to prepare for and reflect on the program. Programs can be scheduled at least two weeks in advance and are being offered on a limited basis, Tuesdays-Thursdays. You can find supporting materials for these programs as well as other classroom resources in our Online Resources library.

To schedule a program, complete our Program Request Form. For help selecting or customizing a program for your student or group, please reach out to

To stay updated on new virtual offerings from the Kennedy Institute, please sign up for our educator’s mailing list.

Virtual Program Offerings

Virtual Welcoming Words

Grade K-3, 1 hour
Number of participants: 10-30 students
Learn about the Statue of Liberty and how she is a symbol of welcome for new immigrants. In this program students will listen to a story about Lady Liberty, think about what it means to welcome others, and work on a virtual creative activity together with an Institute staff member.

Virtual Pathways to Citizenship

Grades 4-8, 1 hour
Number of participants: 10-60 students
Students learn about the challenges facing modern-day immigrants and work together as Senators to build a bill that defines a pathway to citizenship for four groups of undocumented immigrants: DREAMers, farm workers, refugees, and a general immigrant population.

Virtual Cabinet Confirmation Hearing for Merrick Garland

The Senate is in the spotlight as it begins to consider President Biden’s nominees for his Cabinet. This special, limited-time offering brings the confirmation hearing of Merrick Garland, President Biden’s nominee for Attorney General, to your classroom. Through an interactive virtual experience, your students will learn more about the Senate’s unique role in the Cabinet nominee confirmation process, consider the history and role of the Attorney General, evaluate Merrick Garland’s qualifications and his stated positions, and ultimately decide for themselves whether or not to confirm Garland as the next Attorney General of the United States.

Virtual Supreme Court Justice Hearing

Grades 9-12, 1 hour
In a special, limited-time virtual offering for high school students, bring the nomination hearing of a Supreme Court justice to your classroom. Through an interactive virtual experience, your class will learn more about the Senate’s unique role in the Supreme Court judicial confirmation process, evaluate Judge Coney Barrett’s qualifications and her stated positions, consider the implications of approving a justice in the days before a presidential election, and ultimately decide for themselves whether or not to confirm Judge Coney Barrett as the next Associate Justice to the United States Supreme Court.

Virtual Today’s Vote

Grades 6-12, 1 hour
Number of participants: 10-60 students
Students participate in a simulated U.S. Senate session and a live floor debate on an actual piece of legislation pending before the Senate. Students will consider the issue from multiple perspectives, share their own ideas, and then cast their (virtual) votes.

Groups can choose from the following topics:

Virtual Today’s Vote: The Electoral College Learn more about the history, function, and importance of the Electoral College and why there’s a movement to end and replace it.

Virtual Today’s Vote: Green New Deal Unpack the plan to reshape the national economy to better protect our planet from climate change.

Virtual Today’s Vote: Mandatory Minimum Sentences Examine a bill that would grant federal judges the discretion to issue sentences shorter than those established by mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines.

Virtual Today’s Vote: Voting Rights Restoration Consider the barriers that people convicted of serious crimes face when they vote. Consider whether incarcerated people should have their voting rights restored after serving their sentence. This topic is also recommended for college groups.

Virtual Today’s Vote: Confederate Monument Removal Act Discuss a proposal to remove all Confederate monuments from the U.S. Capitol Building and reflect on how monuments to different historic figures express the values of our nation.

Virtual Exhibit Tour: Lion of the Senate

Grades 8-12, 1 hour
Number of participants: 10-60 students
Join the Institute for a live virtual tour of the Institute’s new, online, exhibit Lion of the Senate. Explore Senator Kennedy’s career and ongoing legislative legacy through captivating images, stories, and conversation. Staff will share deeper insight into the scope of Senator Kennedy’s accomplishments, his passion for the senate, and the Institute’s ongoing mission of civic engagement.

Program Fees

Massachusetts Public Schools

Sponsored by the generous support of The Stone Family Foundation

All other Massachusetts School Groups

$5 / student

Scholarships are available on a limited basis for qualifying schools

All Non-Massachusetts Schools

$5 / student

All College groups

$10 / student

Community or Adult Group

$5 for those under 18, $10 for those 18+

To schedule a program please complete our Program Request Form.