Home School of Journalism and Mass Communication PBS Host Alexander Heffner To Visit Drake Next Week

PBS Host Alexander Heffner To Visit Drake Next Week

It’s never too early to start speculating about the nation’s next political leaders. That’s what Alexander Heffner, host of PBS’s The Open Mind, plans to address during his campus visit to Drake University next week. His visit is part of the E.T. Meredith Center for Magazine Studies’s ongoing Visiting Professional Series.


Heffner will deliver a public lecture titled The Future of Civil Discourse: Millennials, Media, and the 2016 Campaign. The address, which is free and open to the public, will be on Monday, February 23, at 7 p.m. in the Cowles Library Reading Room.

Why focus on civil discourse? “In Iowa, there’s an unprecedented opportunity for direct democratic engagement with young voters,” Heffner said. “It’s never been more important from the outset of a presidential campaign to frame issues accurately and substantively.”

The journalist is an expert on how young voters engage with politics and presidential elections. He covered the Millennial vote in the 2012 election as a special correspondent for Need to Know on PBS. His writing has been published in the Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and more.

Drake students taking select journalism and politics courses will also have the opportunity to speak with Heffner when he visits classes on Monday and Tuesday. Drake’s student media leaders will join him for lunch to discuss student publications. “I’m excited to interact with the community and together think about the future of public media, journalism, and American politics,” Heffner said.

Catch up with Heffner before he visits by following him on Twitter, and watch his past interviews from The Open Mind.