March Student Spotlight: ‘Free Speech’ Resolution Authors at Georgia Gwinnett College

By on March 29, 2013

FIRE’s Student Spotlight feature recognizes students who are doing outstanding work to promote individual rights on their campuses. This month, FIRE recognizes the work of students at Georgia Gwinnett College (GGC), who authored a stirring "Free Speech on Campus" resolution calling on the college to honor its moral and legal duties as a public institution under the First Amendment. 

As Azhar reported on The Torch earlier this month, Michael Christian, a student senator at GGC, contacted FIRE last June to ask about speech codes at his school. FIRE’s review found several problematic policies on the books at GGC. Armed with FIRE’s analysis, Michael and other student leaders on campus, including Shannon Conner, Travis Jones, Quinton Malone, Tiffany McCarty, and Tyler Vining, authored the "Free Speech on Campus" resolution to call for policy reform. On February 4, this resolution passed with the overwhelming support of the Student Government’s Senate and Executive Council. The resolution’s detailed prescriptions for improving GGC’s speech codes are a great first step towards reform at GGC, and we hope administrators have taken note!

I recently asked Michael Christian, Travis Jones, Tiffany McCarty, and Seijin Tranberg to talk about their experience of writing and passing this resolution and to tell me what advice their coalition has for other students who want to support speech rights on campus. You can read their full interview on the Student Spotlight page.

Congratulations to Michael, Travis, Tiffany, Seijin, and all the students who helped pass this resolution at Georgia Gwinnett! Check back on The Torch next month to hear about more students who are successfully challenging the culture of campus censorship. To nominate a student or student group for FIRE’s Student Spotlight, email jaclyn@thefire.org.

Schools: Georgia Gwinnett College