Good Housekeeping has their seal as a stamp of approval for good household products. Campus Vote Project and NASPA are teaming up to offer our own recognition for campuses that help students register and vote.
The Voter Friendly Campus designation program is a brand new opportunity and we want to answer some basic questions to help administrators decide if they should sign up. Voter Friendly Campus designation interest forms are due May 13, 2016.
Q.What is the Voter Friendly Campus designation program?
A. This program helps institutions develop a plan that will coordinate administrators, faculty, and student organizations in civic and electoral engagement. After colleges and universities execute their plan to help students register and vote in the 2016 elections, campuses will be evaluated and designated as an official Voter Friendly Campus.
Q. Why should my college or university sign up to be designated a Voter Friendly Campus?
A. In addition to educating students, fostering civic learning is a goal of many colleges and universities. By helping students register and vote, campuses will help students be active participants in our democracy. The Voter Friendly Campus designation helps administrators develop a plan using our checklist and set clear goals so a path can be created well in advance of November. These activities can be institutionalized for the following years, keeping students engaged as they enter, and move through their time at school.
Q. What happens after we are designated a Voter Friendly Campus?
A. Campuses that follow through on their plan to register students and help them cast a ballot will be recognized and sent materials that can be used on the college or university’s website and on social media. CVP and NASPA will maintain and promote an Honor Roll of the institutions that receive the designation.
Q. Does the designation have to be renewed?
A. Yes, designations awarded in early 2017 will be valid through 2018, with an updated round of Voter Friendly Campuses designations in early 2019. The development of the initial plan will put your campus in a good position to continue these activities for years to come. After seeing the results from 2016, plans can be modified and adapted to best suit the campus and its students, and lead the campus’ efforts to maintain the designation in future cycles.
Q. If I sign up for the interest form am I committed to participating?
A. We hope you continue with the program after you learn more about expectations and activities that can help students register and vote, but there is no penalty if you don’t follow through with the program.
Q. Are there any fees associated with participating in this program?
A. There is no cost to join the Voter Friendly Campus designation program. Many of the tools we recommend in the checklist use existing communications tools like email, social media, and the current website. We also recommend working with student groups and campus volunteers to help spread the word. It is your choice if you decide to spend additional funds to engage student voters.
This program is endorsed by our colleagues at the American Democracy Project, The Democracy Commitment, and Young Invincibles. We hope to have a long list of campuses participating in this effort and educating student voters on registration and voting.
If you have any questions please contact Campus Vote Project Director, Mike Burns at (202) 331-0114 or email@example.com.