We’re in the middle of election season and things are starting to heat up. Campaigns are rolling, candidates are rallying and deadlines are fast approaching. For most, these deadlines are simple to follow, and the process is straightforward. However, for college students the logistics can sometimes be tricky.
Whether you go to college in your home state or not, you may have to make a choice about where to vote. Some of you will vote absentee in order to have a say in what happens in the community where you grew up. Others feel more connected to their community at school and want to cast their vote there.
As a college student you might have a choice about where to register to vote. Review USAGov’s college voting guide and learn about voting for college students:
Voting is your constitutional right and the engine of our democracy, and a handful of votes can swing an election. Use your vote to voice your beliefs. Don’t let others choose your next mayor, governor, congressman, senator or president for you.
Only 38 percent of 18-24 year olds voted in the 2012 presidential election. And yet, millennials are already the largest generation actively in the workforce. Young Americans can influence the direction of this country. Only you know the issues you care about. Find out who represents them best and vote for that person, whether it’s for the local council, state capitol, Congress or the White House.
Use Vote.gov to register anywhere in the U.S. College students may have the option to register at home or at their college address. It all comes down to your plans to reside in the state and having the proper documentation. Look up your state on the Campus Vote Project’s Student Guide and find out if you have everything you need if you want to vote at school.
States have different deadlines and rules, check with your state’s election office so you don’t miss a deadline. Don’t wait; deadlines will be here in no time!
Make a plan
It may sound obvious, but having a voting plan is one of the most important things you can do after registering. Work, school, practice and midterms can make any day hectic. Know where your polling place is and have a plan for that day. Are you driving? Taking the bus? If you know you won't be able to make it, you may be able to vote early or absentee. Plan ahead and don’t be caught off guard.
Work at the polls
Want to take a more hands on approach to the Election Day? Elections run smoothly and successfully in the U.S. thanks in large part to poll workers or election judges. They help run local polling places, carry out election procedures, and make sure that the rights of all voters are protected. Interested? Find out if you are eligible to be a poll worker in your state.
Learn more by visiting USA.gov/voting, your official guide to voting and the election process.
Stay up-to-date with VoteUSA, USAGov’s yearlong effort to help Americans become more informed about the 2016 election. Join the conversation using #VoteUSA or by following USAGov on Facebook and Twitter.