Big Ten promotes student voter initiative

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Screenshot of Campus Democracy Challenge Website

The homepage of the Big Ten Voting Challenge explains the event. Big Ten schools compete against each other to see which college can turn out the most votes and which can achieve the greatest increase in voting rates.

By Diana Anghel, Assistant News Editor

The Big Ten Conference has launched a student voter initiative called the “Big Ten Voting Challenge.” It’s a competition among the 14 universities to compel students to vote in the upcoming election. Universities will be competing for two titles: greatest overall turnout and greatest increase in voting rates.

The winners will be chosen based on data provided by the National Study on Learning, Voting and Engagement, according to the All In Challenge website. 

The two universities that receive the titles will be announced at an awards ceremony and presented with trophies. 

Illinois Student Affairs has published a page on their website with further information and sources to register to vote. The initiative scope of the competition is to “utilize a coalition to influence student voting as a component of civic responsibility” and to use “synergies of a multidisciplinary non-partisan coalition to develop initiatives to increase student  voter turnout.” 

Moreover, the strategic goals of the campaign are to normalize voting behavior throughout the Illinois campus, to inflict cultural changes that influence campus-voting practices and to implement key strategies for robust student voter engagement. 

In 2018, the average voter registration rate stood at 77% at participating All In Big Ten campuses, according to the Campus Democracy Challenge website; University of Illinois was included in these data. The same year also saw a 25% increase in campus voter turnout throughout the Big Ten. 

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