Youth virtually engage their peers on National Voter Registration Day

College students reach out to hundreds of thousands of potential voters in massive registration push

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For Immediate Release: 

For More Information:

Nicole Walter, WashPIRG Students Campus Organizer, 626-622-8761, [email protected]

Manny Rin, Student PIRGs New Voters Project Director, 925-234-1457, [email protected]

SEATTLE, Washington  Although COVID-19 has reshaped the election landscape in 2020, as in the past, motivated young Americans are leading the efforts to mobilize their communities this fall, even with minimal face-to-face interaction on campus. On National Voter Registration Day (Tuesday, Sept. 22), college student leaders with the WashPIRGs’ New Voters Project will raise their peers’  awareness over social media, organize diverse coalitions of student groups and hold virtual events in an online effort to register thousands of students to vote. 

While traditional on-campus outreach has halted across most of the country, students are still focused on using personalized tactics to mobilize young people — the largest potential voting bloc in the United States. 

“Voting is the one of the most powerful ways we can make our voices heard. The coronavirus pandemic has complicated the process, so we are building large, diverse coalitions on our college campuses to push for safe voting,” said Allison Kirste, WashPIRG Students Board Chair.  “National Voter Registration Day is just the first step in our effort to turn out students this November.”

The goal of this year’s National Voter Registration Day is to increase participation in democracy by registering, educating, and activating students in the campus community. 

At the University of Washington, WashPIRG students are hosting a peer-to-peer voter registration event with the ASUW Office of Government Relations to make sure everyone they know is registered to vote, as well as their friends’ friends and more. Throughout the day they’ll be sharing students’ personal stories about the importance of the youth vote across social media to continue to build a culture of civic engagement on campus, even with remote learning.

WashPIRG Students is partnering with campus officials, faculty, student groups and others across the state to ensure that University of Washington students have the ability to exercise their most basic right – the right to vote.

“National Voter Registration Day reminds us of our duty to recognize and celebrate the significant role our younger citizens play in shaping the future of our state, and our nation,” said Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman. “I am grateful for the opportunity to partner with WashPIRG Students in its effort to encourage young people to vote and make their voices heard.”

Looking to build on these results, the student leaders with WashPIRG will keep working to increase voter participation of students at the University of Washington before the voter registration deadline. Students are already planning remote events, like competitions between student groups to register the most voters, to make sure students are registered and have everything they need to cast their vote.

“Right now, young people are fired up — going to protests and signing petitions. We need to make sure we make our voices heard on Election Day as well,” said Manny Rin, director of Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project. “In an online world, young people are uniquely set up to organize others. It’s time we show the country that America’s largest generation votes!”

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Follow National Voter Registration Day activities through social media on September 22 by searching #PIRG, #NVRD,  #NationalVoterRegistrationDay, #CampusTakeover and by following @StudentPIRGs