MITCHELL, SD -
Preparations are being made for the McGovern Conference at Dakota Wesleyan University on Sunday.
Three weeks after the former senator's death, George McGovern will be honored in the annual political conference he helped organize.
McGovern casted a long shadow over campus in Mitchell, just ask DWU junior Chase Kristensen.
"Being here on campus for the last three years, George is always in and out of the up and in there reading the newspaper and drinking coffee," Kristensen said.
The annual McGovern Conference focuses on issues McGovern himself was passionate about. He usually spoke at the event each year. Now instead; there will be a special tribute to honor the former U.S. Senator.
"The tribute is really a celebration of Senator McGovern's life and the great things that he did, not only for DWU and the DWU community, but for the nation and the world," Dean and Director of the McGovern Center Donald Simmons said.
McGovern planned the conferences and Simmons says McGovern hand picked this year's topic, "Moving Beyond Political Polarization."
"I think with the campaign just getting over and all the recent mud-slinging type campaigns we've just had, the campaign theme being polarization and working together, I think will hit home for everybody," Kristensen said.
Kristensen and others attending say they’ll miss McGovern's speech this year, but they look forward to the message always being the same.
"Well the biggest change will be with this actual physical presence, but his legacy will continue and I don't anticipate that there will be a dramatic change. We are going to continue to talk about the issues that were really at the heart of Senator McGovern's interests," Simmons said.
The McGovern conference begins at 10 a.m. on Monday at the Sherman center on the DWU campus. It’s free and open to the public.
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