Contact [email protected]

About Our Chapter:

The UMass Amherst MASSPIRG Chapter began in 1972. We are one of the oldest PIRG chapters in the country. For over 50 years, we’ve been organizing students on our campus to play an active role in making our society a better place by running local, statewide, and national campaigns on issues that affect us as students and citizens.

Recently, we’ve been working to get our campus to be a leader in fighting climate change by committing to get 100 percent of our energy from clean, safe, renewable sources. You may also know us from our New Voters Project, our non-partisan youth voter mobilization effort to help first-time voters have the tools they need to get registered and turn out to vote. In the 2018 elections, we helped register over 1200 students to vote and saw a 75% increase at the student-heavy polling locations near campus since the 2014 midterm elections. We are also running a campaign to make textbooks more affordable by promoting open education resources, save the bees by making UMass a bee-friendly campus, and alleviate poverty locally and across the state.

We are able to do all this because students here at UMass have voted for the past 50 years to have a MASSPIRG chapter, funded through an $11 waive-able fee that appears on the tuition bill. This money, pooled together with students from all across the state, allows us to have a much bigger impact on these issues at the state and national level, by hiring advocates, lawyers, organizers, and experts to help us run effective campaigns and have a much stronger voice where decisions are made.

Learn more about the MASSPIRG fee at UMass Amherst here!

Current Campaigns:

  • New Voters Project: During Election cycles, both midterm and presidential, we work to help register as many students to vote as possible, and contact them to help them get out to the polls! During the 2020 election we helped contact over 50,000 students to vote. Through our outreach on campus, we are able to help students not only register to vote but also inform them what is on the ballot in a non-partisan way.

  • 100% Renewable Energy: Our campaign for 100% Renewable Energy successfully won a 100% commitment from the University. Now, we’re focusing on getting 1 million solar roofs installed across Massachusetts! We have generated a petition and will be tabling for signatures as well as sending the petition out on social media. Our generation is the first to feel the impacts of climate change, and only we have the power to mitigate its harmful effects.

  • Make Textbooks More Affordable: College is very expensive for students, adding to those costs are additional course materials and textbooks that are extremely expensive. In order to reduce the financial burden, MASSPIRG advocates for the usage of Open Educational Resources, open source information that professors can utilize to create a free class resource. UMass Amherst already has a grant program to incentivize professors to use this open source information, and we want to inform both students and professors about this opportunity.

Chapter Leadership:

Ashley Agostinelli // Chapter Chair

Class of 2023 | Psychology and Linguistics Major

[email protected]

Ashley is the Chair of MASSPIRG Students. She is a Senior at the University of Massachusetts Amherst majoring in Psychology and Linguistics. She first started during Fall 2020 to help register students to vote in the 2020 election. Since then, she has gone from the Secretary to Chapter Chair at UMass Amherst. Outside of MASSPIRG, Ashley likes to knit, read and play board games with friends. After graduation, Ashley plans to attend law school and apply all that she has learned in her future career.

Caitlyn Egan // Chapter Vice Chair

Class of 2023 | Environmental Science and Public Policy Major

[email protected]

Caitlyn Egan is the current Vice Chair of MASSPIRG at UMass Amherst. She started volunteering with MASSPIRG when she was a freshman and has continued to take on leadership with the organization ever since. Her passion for the environment got her interested in the organization, and her experience with MASSPIRG has sparked an interest in pursuing Environmental Policy at the federal level. She is excited to have met so many amazing people through working with MASSPIRG, and will remember her experience forever!

Catherine Sales // Chapter Treasurer

Class of 2023 | Psychology Major

[email protected]

Catherine Sales is the current Treasurer of MASSPIRG at UMass Amherst. She originally joined MASSPIRG in fall of 2020, quickly becoming a lead intern of the New Voters Project, helping mobilize students to vote in the presidential election. Civic engagement is something I have always been passionate about and being able to help students to vote and get their voices heard

Zeina Zahoori // Chapter Secretary

Class of 2025 | Computer Science and Mathematics Major

[email protected]

Zeina Zahoori is the current Secretary of MASSPIRG at UMass Amherst. She is a sophomore studying Computer Science and Mathematics, who initially joined MASSPIRG to get involved in the Affordable Textbooks Campaign. Her passion for giving back to the community stems from her involvement in Girl Scouts growing up. She enjoys hiking, shopping, and dancing.

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