Tomorrow campuses from across the country will be participating in a day of action to register voters. Held this year on September 23rd, National Voter Registration Day (NVRD) is a one day blitz with events that will raise awareness of the need to register and update voter registration, and encourage all eligible voters to participate in this year’s midterm elections. Events like those celebrating NVRD tomorrow are particularly important to raise awareness in students. Unlike in presidential elections, college campuses are a low priority for midterm candidates’ registration and Get Out The Vote efforts. This doesn’t mean November’s election is any less important for college students. Voters will elect officials who will make decisions on issues like student loans and debt, college affordability, job creation, and environmental issues. These are issues that directly impact students. It’s critical students make sure their voices are heard. Here are some simple things you can do to be a part of NVRD tomorrow:
- Register to vote or update your voter registration information. For information on how to do that visit CVP’s website or the NVRD website.
- Participate on an NVRD event on your campus.
- Use Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to remind students about NVRD using #CelebrateNVRD or mentioning @CelebrateNVRD.
- Encourage your friends to register to vote.
- Participate in #votepledge2014.
NVRD is a great opportunity for campuses to begin focusing attention on Election Day and the importance of voting. Registration deadlines are sometimes as far out as 30 days before Election Day, which is often well before most students are paying attention to elections. The time to inform and empower students is now. Students often lack basic information about registering and voting, which is a major barrier to participation. It is crucial they have specifics on:
- Registration deadlines
- How to register
- The opportunity to register with their college address or home address
- Ways they can cast a ballot (early voting, absentee ballots, on Election Day)
- Early voting and Election Day polling locations
- What forms of voter ID they need to show in order to cast a ballot
Making sure students have the information they need is an ongoing effort. Even after registration deadlines pass, voters need to know how to request absentee ballots and when to return them, early voting options, and reminders for Election Day. Students can work with their college’s administration, student government, campus newspapers, and other organizations to make sure those messages are sent. Campus Vote Project has concise guides with all the information students need to vote for all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Each guide includes information on where to find registration forms, how to register at school or home, what type of ID is needed to register and vote, where to vote, ways to cast a ballot, and answers to common student questions. The work doesn’t end after National Voter Registration Day. Students still have time to register and update information. They also need to be aware of other information so they can cast their ballot. If you have questions about options to cast a ballot, deadlines, or how to find a polling locations check out our guides or contact Campus Vote Project firstname.lastname@example.org.