East Tennessee State University Receives Secretary of State’s Tennessee College Voter Registration Competition Award

East Tennessee State University Receives Secretary of State’s Tennessee College Voter Registration Competition Award

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Secretary of State Tre Hargett, Senator Rusty Crowe and Representative Rebecca Alexander applaud East Tennessee State University for earning the Best Social Media Campaign award in Tennessee College Voter Registration Competition.

“Congratulations to East Tennessee State University and all the students who worked diligently on social media and in person to get their fellow students registered to vote,” said Secretary Hargett. “In Tennessee, your vote matters. I hope all the newly registered students become active participants in our elections and go vote.”

In a joint statement, Sen. Rusty Crowe and Rep. Rebecca Alexander said, "We’re so very proud of the students of ETSU and hope they understand just how valuable they are -- not just as voters, but as citizens participating in the democratic process. They are Tennessee’s next generation of leaders and can be a powerful force, but only if they make voting a lifelong habit." 

During the competition, East Tennessee State University created the social media campaign, “voter registration is so easy, you can even do it from your couch.” Campus celebrities were highlighted on their couch promoting Tennessee’s online voter registration on social media. A voter registration event was held during a home football, encouraging students to share on social media they registered to vote. On National Voter Registration Day, the Buccaneers also had a Civic Couch Party encouraging students to share selfies taken on blow-up couches around campus, promoting voter registration.

“Among ETSU's core values is the belief that diversity of people and thought is essential and must be respected,” ETSU President Dr. Brian Noland said. “Voting is the ultimate expression of that idea, as it gives each person a voice and the chance to be heard. I am proud that ETSU is a leader in promoting active participation in our democracy, and I applaud our students and staff for their hard work, creativity, and dedication to supporting an engaged citizenry.”

The Secretary of State’s 2022 Tennessee College Voter Registration Competition was held during National Voter Registration Month in September. Thirty-seven of Tennessee’s 2- and 4-year colleges and universities participated in this year’s contest.

In addition to East Tennessee State University, Middle Tennessee State University won the award for top 4-year public university, Cumberland University earned the top spot in the private university category and Southwest Tennessee Community College won in the 2-year community college category in this year’s Tennessee College Voter Registration Competition. The University of Tennessee, Knoxville was recognized for excellence in the special category of Most Creative Voter Registration Campaign.

The winning schools were selected based on the number of new students registered and their social media presence, both weighted by student enrollment and their creativity in promoting the Tennessee College Voter Registration Competition. 

For more information about the Secretary of State's civic engagement initiatives, visit sos.tn.gov/civics.