Columbia State Students Head To The Polls

(COLUMBIA, Tenn. –  March 3, 2020) - - -FourteenColumbia State Community College students volunteered at different polling locations across Williamson County Tuesday morning to help set up voting machines.

“We are excited about our partnership with the students from Columbia State who will be assisting our poll officials in our new voting technology,” said Chad Gray, Williamson County Election Commission election administrator. “This will allow them to be a part of an important part of the democratic process.”

Nicholas Matzirakis, Columbia State dual enrollment student, said that this was a great way to apply some of the things he has learned in class in a real-world setting.

Nick Matzirakis helping with voting machines
Photo Caption: Pictured (left to right): Nicholas Matzirakis (Franklin), Columbia State dual enrollment student, and Donald King, poll machine operator, set up polling machines early Tuesday morning at Clovercroft Elementary School.

“When Chad Gray asked if some of our students would be interested in helping set up for the primary election I thought that it would be a unique service-learning opportunity,” said Deepa Janakiraman, Columbia State program director and associate professor for computer information technology. “Our students were really excited to volunteer. It’s a great way for our college to give back to a community that has served us so well.”

Keith Marlin, Columbia State student, is working on an associate of applied science degree in computer information technology with an emphasis in cyber defense. He said that setting up for the election is good job experience that is preparing him for his future.

Keith Marlin at the Polls
Photo Caption: Keith Marlin (Murfreesboro), Columbia State computer information technology student, assists at the Page High School polling location.

“This is such a great opportunity,” Marlin said. “This is giving me a chance to see what kind of security goes on here so that I can help later on within the cyberspace.”

Noura helps at Trinity Elementary polls
Photo Caption: 
Noura Moris (Murfreesboro), Columbia State medical informatics student, sets up polling machines at Trinity Elementary School.

Tucker helps with voting Machines
Photo Caption: 
Tucker Alexander (Brentwood), Columbia State student, works on polling machines at the Cool Springs Conference Center. 

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