As the November elections quickly approach, students in North Carolina are getting ready to mobilize their peers to make sure their voices are heard this election. To prepare, NCPIRG Students has set out to help register hundreds of students to vote this summer in preparation for the November elections, while also laying the groundwork on our campuses to make registering even easier this fall.
Since launching our 2020 New Voters Project in North Carolina, we’ve recruited a team of 40 interns and engaged over 75 students in actions so far reaching out to over 2500 students to help register them to vote online and pledge to vote safely this fall.
With the recent update from the State Board of Elections and DMV, announcing that North Carolina’s with valid identification are eligible to register online for the first time ever, it is even more important to ensure that all eligible voters in NC know about these updates and are registering to vote safely right away!
Here are some of the highlights from New Voters Project launch:
We kicked off our campaign with over 45 interns attending our launch event. Over the course of the event, our team was able to send out 838 texts to friends reminding folks to register to vote, emailed 230 faculty to get the word to ask them to spread the word, and generated 46 social media posts.
Last week, we held our first Voter Registration Week of Action, which was a chance for our team of interns to plan, recruit and coordinate a variety of events with the goal of making sure students across NC learn about online voter registration and update their registration right away! Over the course of the week we held a total of 14 events, trained 20 coordinators to help lead the events, and had over 200 hours of volunteering, and directly engaged almost 300 student leaders, students and faculty in our campaign actions. In addition to the voter registrations collected during the blitz week, our voter institutionalization team has also been working hard behind the scenes to make sure that students not only have a chance to register right now, but that our campuses also are prepared to do what it takes to register their students to vote and make sure they cast a ballot this fall. So far our team has met with UNC Pembroke to get a commitment to send all campus emails, talked with NC A&T about running a campus-wide virtual pledge to vote campaign, discussed integrating our online voter tool into Forsyth Tech’s webpage, held a meeting with Appalachian State University administrators and students to discuss joining their vote coalition, and set up dozens of more future meetings with administrators, Student Government Associations and student organizations at Durham Technical Community College, UNC Charlotte, Duke University, UNC Chapel Hill, and more.
Student Leaders in Action
|Efi Jagun is a student going into her second year at Durham Tech Community College. Last year on campus, Efi worked with our textbook affordability campaign and this summer Efi has taken on a role in our campus relations team. Together with other Durham Tech interns, she has helped to expand our coalition there. After taking on more leadership this summer, Efi has decided to take on the role of Vice Chair of the Chapter next fall.|
|Chase Barnhill is a rising Senior at NC State working with our visibility team this summer. During our registration blitz week, Chase coordinated an event where she recruited 2 hourly coordinators and 23 volunteers to reach out to hundreds of student groups, faculty, and friends with voter information to share! She has also been working on a video highlighting student group presidents, athletes, and Greek life leadership, sharing why they are voting to get students on her campus excited about voting. Here she is pictured in the top left during an hour of the event she coordinated!|
|Hannah Varnell is a rising senior at the University of North Carolina – Charlotte. This summer Hannah has helped register hundreds of students in North Carolina by promoting NCStudentVote.org, a one stop resource for students to register and turn out to vote. As a part of our media team, this July, Hannah is organizing a radio and podcast outreach event to amplify NCStudentVote.org and other resources to help educate students.|
|Jada Rice is a NC State intern on our institutionalize the vote team. This summer Jada has been working to get NC State students pumped up about voting by engaging with her teammates on the NC State Women’s Basketball team and working with the athletic program director to incorporate voting initiatives into the wolfpack fan culture. One such initiative that Jada has been involved with aims to get NC State athletes and other campus VIP’s to create a video compilation around why they vote that can be shared on the campus this fall!|