Weber State is ALL IN to Get Students to Vote
OGDEN, Utah – Weber State University President Brad Mortensen is joining 160 higher education presidents and chancellors for the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge. The program has as its goal — 100% voter registration and participation in all elections for college students. In conjunction with the challenge, WSU’s Political Engagement Coalition will host “Weber State Votes,” an initiative to achieve 100% voter participation for all its students.
“I am proud to sign the Higher Education Presidents’ Commitment to Full Student Voter Participation,” Mortensen said. “Promoting civic engagement and positive involvement in our democracy lies at the heart of the university. We should be both educators and practitioners of political engagement.”
The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge is a nonpartisan, national initiative striving to help college campuses increase nonpartisan democratic engagement among students. The idea is to encourage higher education institutions to help students form the habits of active and informed citizenship and make democratic participation a core value on their campuses.
“I think this initiative is so exciting because it is important for us as a university to have students politically engaged,” said Ashley Morales, a member of WSU’s American Democracy Project, which is part of the Political Engagement Coalition. “Every student comes from a different background, so it’s important to learn about other people’s perspectives. I hope this helps students know their voice matters. By voting and voicing your opinions, change can happen.”
WSU launched the Political Engagement Coalition website to provide a one-stop-shop for students to navigate the political process. Students will have access to a variety of features including tools to register to vote, confirm voter registration, determine how and where to vote and understand what is on their ballot. Students can also visit allintovote.org for additional resources beginning in August.
According to ALL IN, while college student voter participation in elections increased from the 2014 midterm election to the 2018 midterm election, less than half of college students made their voices heard by casting their ballots.
“We are seeing what happens in our nation when civic education is allowed to lapse,” said Leah Murray, WSU political science professor. “People have forgotten how to engage in their republic, how to deliberate and why it matters that they pay attention to the government. We need these skills now more than ever. Weber State is ‘all in’ on giving our students the tools to feel confident enough to use their voices to solve problems respectfully and thoughtfully.”
More than 650 campuses, enrolling more than 7.5 million students, have joined the challenge since its launch in summer 2016. To learn more about the ALL IN challenge, visit www.allinchallenge.org
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