SUNY Purchase Wins SUNYSA Civic Engagement Award

PSGA representatives are given the Civic Engagement Award at the annual Fall Conference. Back (left to right): Senator Donyae McCray, Senator Steve Kollias (Comm.), Public Affairs Coordinator Addison Jenkins, Finance Coordinator Jack Sullivan. Front (left to right): Senate Secretary Janessa Stoner, Senator Jess Gambino (Neu), Vice President Alli McCloat, Senate Chair Teresa Wheeler, Office Manager Maggie Drake (Photo via Alli McCloat).

By Stephen DiFiore

Due to the high voter turnout on campus during the 2018 midterm elections, the SUNY Student Assembly awarded SUNY Purchase with its Civic Engagement Award at the 2018 Annual Fall Conference.

"This award was won by every person on this campus who registered to vote and then showed up to the polls," said PSGA Vice President Alli McCloat. "The students here made history with our voter turnout and that's something we, as a community should be extremely proud of."

Purchase College was presented this award due to its "outstanding civic engagement and student participation in the 2018 midterm elections." (Photo via PSGA Vice President Alli McCloat).

According to NYPIRG, the student advocacy group on campus that works on voter registration and education, 797 students voted on campus for the 2018 midterm elections. To put that in context, only 104 students voted in the 2014 midterms.

"Here on Purchase campus this year we've worked hard to change the story that any single vote doesn't matter, [or] that this is a chore that everyone should do but no one knows enough about," said NYPIRG Project Coordinator Elisabeth Lareau. "And because of that, we changed the common story's ending. Students did vote with a demand for free and quality SUNY. Midterm turnout on campus reached near presidential levels. We're proud to be a part of the largest midterm turnout in America in 104 years."

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PSGA Bylaws (August 2018), Student Bill of Rights, Section B. Freedom of Speech, Press and Inquiry

Neither the student government nor any faculty or administrative person or board shall make a rule or regulation or take any action which abridges students’ freedom of speech, press or inquiry, as guaranteed Constitutional rights as citizens of the United States. Students of the campus are guaranteed:

  1.  the right to examine and discuss all questions of interest to them, and to express opinion privately and publicly;

  2. the right to learn in the spirit of free inquiry;

  3. the right to be informed of the purposes of all research in which they are expected or encouraged to participate either as subject or researcher;

  4. the right to freedom from censorship in campus newspapers and other media 

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