Students from Mammoth Spring High School took part in Young Voters Week activities March 8 at the state Capitol. The annual workshop is sponsored by Secretary of State Charlie Daniels to help foster involvement in the elections process among the state's 18- to 25-year-olds.
The sessions included 12 schools from the First Congressional District: Central High School in West Helena, Cushman, Dewitt High School, Greene County Tech in Paragould, Mammoth Spring High School, Marmaduke High School, Norfork High School, Oak Ridge Central in Ravenden Springs, Palestine-Wheatley High School in Palestine, Rivercrest High School in Wilson and Sulphur Rock High School.
Throughout the week, more than 300 students enjoyed a hands-on look at the voting process. Their program included a mock election and an interactive session on how women and minorities won the right to vote.
Rep. Kevin Goss took a break from the legislative session to speak with young constituents from Mississippi County. Students also enjoyed the opportunity to visit with Secretary Daniels and Pulaski County Clerk Pat O'Brien about election issues. Eligible students had the opportunity to register to vote and learned about the state's high school poll worker program. Students concluded the day with a tour of the state Capitol and a look at the General Assembly at work.Daniels is conducting the program in conjunction with the National Association of Secretaries of State, which has designated March as National Young Voters Month. It is part of ongoing efforts to involve more young Americans in the voting process."We're trying to reach these future voters and show them how powerful their voice really is," Daniels said. "If that spark is ignited now, they'll be far more likely to become informed, active voters when they turn 18."For more information on Young Voters Week activities, including educational materials that students will receive, log onto www.sos.arkansas.gov and click on the National Young Voters Month link.