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UPUA Creates First-Ever Civic Engagement Department Through Executive Order

Penn State’s student body government, the University Park Undergraduate Association (UPUA), announced Friday it will create a new civic engagement department under the executive branch.

President Zach McKay created the department through an executive order — his first as student body president.

By creating the new department, UPUA hopes to continue its efforts in encouraging voter registration, education, and civic participation. The executive order specifically mentions UPUA hoping to see greater student engagement across campus surrounding elections.

The new department will also work toward solidifying UPUA’s relationships with organizations such as the Center for Character, Conscience, and Public Purpose, the Centre County League of Women Voters, and its governmental affairs committee.

Working on projects related to civic engagement has been a favorite of McKay’s in his time in UPUA thus far, he said in an interview in late April. Both McKay and his vice president, Lexy Pathickal, ran for election with increasing civic engagement being a large part of their platform. Now, that dream is being realized through the creation of this new department.

“Through this institutionalization of voter registration, education, and participation among the undergraduate student body, I’m confident the UPUA will play a more defined role in leading and organizing campus-wide efforts ahead of election day — this year and every year,” McKay said on Twitter Friday evening.

Applications for those interested in joining the department will open on Saturday, August 1.

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About the Author

Ryen Gailey

Ryen is a junior early childhood education major from "right outside of Philly" - or in exact words, from 23.0 miles outside of Philly. She loves all things Penn State and has been a huge Penn State gal since before she could walk. Send her pictures of puppies, or hate mail at [email protected]

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