Rogers State University’s Office of Student Affairs and Student Government Association have earned state recognition for their efforts to register new student voters this fall.
RSU earned second place in a state-wide contest that encouraged Oklahoma colleges and universities to register students to vote. The contest was held by the Oklahoma Campus Compact, an organization of Oklahoma colleges and university presidents who strive to advance the public purposes of higher education.
RSU registered 6.4 percent of its in-state full-time enrolled students, the second-highest percentage of all institutions with 3,000 or fewer full-time enrolled students. A total of 3,622 in-state and 136 out-of-state students at 23 participating campuses were registered to vote during the contest.
“One of our goals at RSU is to foster civic engagement and awareness, so emphasizing voter registration is part of that process,” said Dr. Brent Marsh, RSU’s Vice President for Student Affairs. “I am pleased with the response by our students, and look forward to building upon this year’s effort in future years in concert with Student Government who deserves a lot of credit for this recognition.”
Autumn Fourkiller, a public affairs – political science sophomore from Stilwell who serves as Executive Assistant for SGA, coordinated RSU SGA’s involvement in the voter registration drive.
“Voter apathy is such a struggle within every election cycle, within every state, but it is especially prevalent in Oklahoma,” Fourkiller said. “The voter registration campaign gave us an opportunity to tune in to why exactly students at RSU were not voting and gave us an opportunity to try and remedy that. I am very pleased with the results of our campaign and hope that our efforts here surpass this year and we see a more engaged electorate moving forward.”
The Office of Student Affairs and RSU SGA registered students at several campus events during the fall, including Big Tent Day, Rock the Vote, and Welcome Week events on all three campuses. Additional efforts included engaging students through emails, social media and partnerships with campus organizations.
Additional top schools in the competition include Eastern Oklahoma State College, East Central University, Northern Oklahoma College, the University of Central Oklahoma, Oklahoma City Community College, and the University of Oklahoma. The seven schools will be recognized for their efforts during the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education meeting on Dec. 1 in Oklahoma City.