Taea Jackson and Patrick Mason elected Miss Alcorn State University, SGA president

Alcorn State University made history this week with the University’s first-ever virtual campaign and online election.

Taea Jackson and Patrick Mason were elected the 94th Miss Alcorn State University and Student Government Association (SGA) president, respectively, via online voting Tuesday, April 28.

The new elects shared their excitement and appreciation for their new roles.

“This is an unreal feeling,” said Jackson. “I feel like I’m dreaming. I’ve finally accomplished something that I have wanted for so long."

“It feels amazing to know that I’m in the position to be a leader of our student body,” said Mason.

Jackson and Mason have big plans for their leadership roles. Jackson’s platform focuses on fueling the future, providing access to more resources for students, creating a more fun experience on campus, and excelling in physical health.

Mason’s initiatives include creating a forum on African-American health, campus safety initiatives, and encouraging more engagement between students and administration. He also hopes to build a bond between students and alumni.

The leaders assure their peers that they are here to provide a better Alcorn experience for them.

“I’m also approachable and willing to talk to students about their concerns regarding the university. I look forward to using my platform to engage with the student body. Although I am appointed to lead, I want to assure them that we are just alike. I am still one of their peers,” said Jackson.

“I am here for them. I will make sure that the students' voices are heard. I will fight for them, as well as strive to have a great year that is fun and memorable,” said Mason.

Despite not being on campus for this year’s election, student participation was significantly up. This year’s election numbers were higher than they were last year thanks to the candidates’ campaigns on their social media pages.

Devina Hogan, director of Student Engagement, was pleased with the students’ enthusiasm and the creativity of their virtual campaigns.

“Amid a national pandemic, all of the candidates persevered and were very creative with their respective platforms,” said Hogan. “I was able to review video content on social media and join live question and answer sessions to assess the level of engagement that took place. Everyone was enthusiastic, which settled me because I was concerned that a lack of face-to-face interaction might cause students to lose interest.”

Hogan also thanks Desmond Stewart, chief enterprise architect for the Center for Information Technology Services (CITS), for his assistance in the online elections.

“I’d like to thank Mr. Stewart for creating the webpage that hosted the election. I relied on his expertise, and he remained calm throughout the process and I’m grateful for diligence.”

President Felecia M. Nave acknowledged the participants for their creativity. She also applauds the outgoing Miss Alcorn and SGA president for their service.

“I want to congratulate the student election winners and I look forward to working with them and moving their platforms forward so that students will have a transformative experience in the coming school year,” said Dr. Nave. “I’m proud of each candidate for their extraordinarily innovative campaigns in a difficult environment.”

She added, “I also wish to acknowledge the outstanding contributions of outgoing SGA President James Herrington and 93rd Miss Alcorn Jakhia Gray, who served with grace and elegance.”

Jackson and Mason thank their supporters for believing in them and helping them reach their leadership goals.

“I am grateful for all of the support I received during my campaign. I’m happy that I attend a university that believes in me. I’m ready to work hard and make everyone proud.”

“I want to thank my peers for trusting me to be their SGA president. I am excited about the fall semester, and I have big things planned.”