Albany State University has released the following information:
The votes are in. An organization on Albany State University's campus is the best student advocacy group among historically black colleges and universities in the nation. ASU's Student Government Association received honors at the 2013 National HBCU Media Summit and Awards ceremony on June 28 at Jackson State University. The selection was based on media coverage garnered by the organization for its activities. 2012-2013 SGA president Clarence Washington accepted the award.
"I am honored to receive the 'Best HBCU SGA Award' on behalf of SGA members who worked faithfully during both terms of my presidency," said a jubilant Washington. "This award is truly a testament that ASUSGA members are not only student leaders, but servant leaders for our campus," he added.
The SGA's nomination included an initiative sparked by news about ASU's economic impact in Southwest Georgia. The SGA asked Albany business owners to offer students, faculty and staff a discount card for goods and services to restaurants, dry cleaners and stores.
Another campaign in 2012 attracted media attention. After SGA leaders learned about the expulsion of Class of 1961 students who participated in the Civil Rights Movement, they petitioned the University System of Georgia Board of Regents to grant degrees to activists. "Our student government thought it was important. We had a protest, online petitions and a 'teach in' to challenge the regents. We requested that they make whole the students who were punished for doing the right thing," said Washington. During fall 2012 Commencement, 38 activists received honorary degrees.
The SGA's voter registration drive, the Trayvon Martin hoodie rally and candlelight vigils that memorialized students were also cited in the nomination.
"The voter panel for the HBCU Awards takes particular consideration for the student honors, and the SGA award specifically highlights students who make a difference in the campus environment for classmates, and the legacy of the institution. Albany State University achieved both of those objectives with the work of its Student Government in highlighting the civic courage of their predecessors, and changing the conditions of their classmates through voting and political awareness. Truly, they are a tremendous example of how students use the seat of campus governance to positively impact people and culture," said founding editor of HBCU Digest Jarrett Carter.
ASU competed with SGA finalists at Alabama State University, South Carolina State University, Wilberforce University and the University of Arkansas Pine Bluff. To view photos from the awards event, visit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/albanystateuniversity/9300566959/.
For more information, please contact the ASU Office of University Communications at (229) 430-4671.