Make a Voting Plan: National Campus Democracy Challenge

Tuesday, Oct 13, 2020

Vote100, the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) Senate, and Princeton’s Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students (ODUS) are pleased to partner with ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge for a series of voting engagement activities starting next week (October 19 to 24). After a summer focused on voter registration efforts, this team is now more specifically focused on the students who are registered to vote, but have not yet committed to a voting plan. For reference, in the 2016 election, 28.5% of Princeton undergraduates were registered, but did not vote. It’s a priority to help students develop concrete voting plans for themselves and to encourage their friends and families to do the same. 

To build excitement and momentum as the November 3rd election approaches, these organizations have partnered to host a week of “Voting Power Hours,” where Princetonians will learn about reaching out to their friends and families via text and encouraging others to vote. This opportunity is particularly exciting because it expands participation, and looks to engage college voters not only in the Ivy League, but in public and private colleges across the country. In this time of remote learning with peers spread across the globe, collaborating in meaningful ways with students from the widest range of experiences, locations, and backgrounds is even more important. 

Participating students will have opportunities to interact with hosts who have volunteered to help — Emma Stone, Selena Gomez, John David Washington, Ramy Youssef, Jessica Chastain, Damien Chazelle, Jon Chu, and Dave Matthews are a part of this effort.  Additional hosts and surprise DJs will be announced over the week. These events serve as direct and authentic engagements for students -- with the goal of building on the idea that all members of this society have a collective responsibility to be active participants in a thriving democracy.  

Events will be streamed via sponsoring organization’s social platforms, and use the Outvote app (outvote.io), which has been used for events sponsored by When We All Vote (a national non-profit, nonpartisan organization). Students can attend one event and return for as many as they like. Because students are texting people they know, engagement is far higher than events where participants reach out to strangers. Recent studies find that friend-to-friend texting may be the most effective voter mobilization action, increasing the likelihood of voting by approximately 8%.

 Please feel free to share these events [reiterate the events here] with friends in the Princeton community and beyond; all are welcome. Millennials and GenZ voters are the largest demographic of eligible voters in this election, and every voice needs to be heard. Those who are not eligible to vote are welcome to join and text others to make voting plans, because everyone should participate in the democratic process. We believe that friends don't let friends 'ghost the vote'!