Op-ed: Mayland Community College should get student IDs approved for voting

Photo: Getty Images/SDI Productions

By Eddie Gouge

May 24, 2024

The North Carolina State Board of Elections (NCSBE) has announced the opening of another application period for eligible educational institutions to apply to have their student IDs approved for the purpose of voting in the 2024 general election.

The NCSBE will accept new applications from April 1 through June 14, 2024, and this is expected to be the final opportunity to apply before the general election on November 5, 2024.

Under state law, public and private colleges and universities may apply to the NCSBE to have their student IDs approved for voting purposes.

Students of Mayland Community College were unable to use their student IDs as a form of identification in the primary elections in March, because Mayland Community College did not have their student IDs approved for this designation prior to the primaries.

With the reopening of the application period, Mayland Community College can rectify this situation by submitting an application to the NCSBE to have its student IDs approved as an acceptable voting ID within the published time frame.

This would allow Mayland Community College to join other academic institutions in our area that had their student IDs approved for use as a voter ID––McDowell Technical Community College, Lees-McRae College, Lenoir-Rhyne University, Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College, and Appalachian State University—to underscore the importance of voting by having their student identification cards approved to be used in upcoming elections as a valid form of voter ID.

Voting is an important civic responsibility and crucial to having the type of communities we desire in Mitchell, Avery, and Yancey counties.

Mayland Community College should be encouraged to have their student ID cards approved for use in voting now that the North Carolina Board of Elections is requesting applications. The time is now! Let’s contact and encourage MCC President John Boyd to complete the NCSBE application. He can be contacted at: [email protected] or (828) 766-1270.


  • Eddie Gouge

    Eddie Gouge is the Chair of the Mitchell County Democratic Party. He graduated from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill with a B.A. in political science and a minor in music in 1976. He went on to serve on the personal staff of several members of Congress in Washington, DC and became the Assistant Vice President for Food and Agriculture at the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities where he served for nearly 32 years before retiring in 2021. He lives in Spruce Pine.



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