Mississippi State again named national ‘Voter Friendly Campus’

Contact: Harriet Laird

An MSU student holds a sign reading "To Vote is to Exist"
Joseph Rutherford, a junior computer engineering major from New Albany, holds a sign encouraging his fellow students to vote during the National Panhellenic Council’s Election Day “Stroll to the Polls” event in November. (Photo by Ariell Fain)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State is again a national “Voter Friendly Campus” for encouraging its students to register and vote in last year’s elections and for its pledge to continue these efforts in the coming years.

Universities awarded voter friendly status are regarded as “accountable for planning and implementing practices that help students overcome barriers to participation in the political process” by the Fair Elections Center’s Campus Vote Project and the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, or NASPA.

Regina Hyatt, MSU vice president for student affairs, said, “The university and the Division of Student Affairs were evaluated based on development of a campus plan to register, educate and turn out student voters in 2020, facilitate voter engagement efforts, and analyze our overall work. These were exceptional accomplishments for MSU and our division—all in the face of the upheaval caused by a global pandemic.”

Hyatt also pointed out that MSU continues to make a strong statement about the civic mission of the university, citing it as an excellent example in higher education in “preparing students to be engaged in our democracy now and in years to come.”

MSU’s efforts included:

—Voter registration drives throughout the fall semester

—Information placement in 2,300 boxes in residence hall rooms for new freshmen and transfer students

—Assistance to The Reflector student newspaper staff in securing an American Press Institute grant for providing additional election coverage

—Information posted to MSU Student Association social media to educate students on election day policies and ballot measures

—Encouragement of student turnout by working with the Division of Student Affairs, and Parking and Transit Services, to provide campus shuttles to and from polling locations

Institutions with the “Voter Friendly Campus” designation represent a wide range of two-year, four-year, public, private, rural and urban campuses, with the program serving more than 3.5 million students.

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.

Wednesday, April 7, 2021 - 4:15 pm