Harrison Kane, a sophomore Legal Studies major at Nazareth College, embodies civic engagement through his commitment to political engagement and advocacy work. The desire to influence social change while working to empower all members of our society to be engaged citizens is what motivates Harrison. As a sophomore, Harrison was selected to work with the Monroe County Board of Elections and five area colleges to recruit and train students to be Election Inspectors and work at local polling sites. Harrison is also the student leader for the College's NazVotes program, charged with strengthening student voter engagement, including registration, education and turnout. Harrison's advocacy work goes beyond Nazareth's campus in his role on the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities in New York's inaugural Student Cabinet. In this role, Harrison meets with key leaders in the NYS Senate and Assembly to offer a student's perspective on the importance of the state's continued support for higher education and student aid. Harrison is a leader in all that he does, even holding the Class President position these past two years in Student Government. He truly personifies effective and long-term commitment to civic engagement in all that he does.
I am studying Legal Studies at Nazareth College because of my interest in law and passion for influencing social change. I first realized this when I was working in my family's therapeutic horseback riding program for individuals with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities. I discovered that some families could not afford the therapy for their children, so I began researching ways within NY State to help fund their therapeutic treatment. In doing so, I realized the power one person can have in using their voice for others and learning systems that could support change. This is why democratic engagement is important to me. There is power in one voice and every vote matters. Voter education is essential at a college because most students coming into college have just received the right to vote and don't know how to be actively engaged. College is a time where students can learn and explore their political ideology while learning how to stand up for their beliefs through our democratic system. Helping guide students on how to be politically engaged is rewarding and helps move our country forward.