VSU Celebrates Constitution Day with Ceremonial Signing, Reading, More September 17th

Staff Report From Valdosta CEO

Friday, September 14th, 2018

Valdosta State University will observe Constitution Day from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 17, in Odum Library. This drop-in event is free of charge and open to all students, faculty, staff, alumni, retirees, and friends of Blazer Nation.
The observance will open with the singing of the National Anthem. Dr. Richard A. Carvajal, president of VSU; Dr. Robert T. Smith, provost and vice president of academic affairs at VSU; and a few VSU students will read aloud the Constitution of the United States. Vivian Miller-Cody and Andy Gibbs of the Valdosta City Council will speak before and after the reading.  
Attendees will have an opportunity to sign a replica of the Constitution, take home a pocket Constitution and a United States flag, play a game of Constitutional Jeopardy, and participate in a special Founding Fathers photo project.
The Valdosta Branch of the American Association of University Women will sponsor a voter registration drive for Georgia residents interested in exercising their right to vote in the upcoming November General Election and future elections. This activity will be led by Dr. Christine James of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, an active member of the AAUW, and her students in PHIL 4120: Ethics and Public Policy, under the guidance of the Lowndes County Board of Elections.
American Sign Language interpreting services will be provided by VSU student volunteers.   
Emily Rogers, Odum Library reference librarian and associate professor, said the purpose of this event is to promote awareness and understanding of the Constitution and of Constitution Day. She and Tyler Tucker, a political science major from Fitzgerald, Georgia, organized VSU’s Constitution Day activities.  
“On Sept. 17, 1787, the Founding Fathers signed the most influential document in American history — the United States Constitution,” according to the National Constitution Center. “This document established the framework of our government and the rights and freedoms that ‘We the People’ enjoy today.”
U.S. Senator Robert Byrd, a democrat from West Virginia, designated Sept. 17 as a day to recognize all who have become citizens, either by birth or naturalization, and to learn more about the formation of the nation’s founding document. Constitution Day became a national observance in 2004.
“Our ideals of freedom, set forth and realized in our Constitution, are our greatest export to the world,” Byrd reportedly once said.
In honor of Constitution Day, all educational institutions receiving federal funding are required to hold an educational program pertaining to the U.S. Constitution.
VSU will continue its celebration of Constitution Day with an exhibit of books, government documents, and media about the Constitution and its interpretation. These items are located in the reference area of the library and will remain on display throughout the month of September.