David Deerson, UNC Chapel Hill

David Deerson is a senior at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, majoring in philosophy and history. David is the president of the UNC College Libertarians, and after interning at FIRE in 2011 he has been an outspoken supporter of free speech in Chapel Hill.

For Constitution Week 2012, David’s group organized several events, including a FIRE speaker, on campus. They also hosted a taping of the Stossel show at UNC, featuring a segment with FIRE’s Senior Vice President, Robert Shibley. The show drew national attention to UNC’s unconstitutional speech codes. After the taping, David got some welcome news: UNC had substantially revised many problematic policies, improving their overall Spotlight rating from “red light” to “yellow light.” David plans to keep up his activism efforts until UNC is a “green light” school for free speech.

For other students trying to promote students rights on their campus, David’s advice is to collaborate:

There is absolutely no way that you are the only person on campus that wants to promote student rights.Find those others, and work with them.

You can read more about David’s successful Constitution Week in his blog post. To find out about speech codes at your school, visit FIRE’s Spotlight database. If your school is not listed, you can request a speech code review here.