During this election season, members of the Indiana University family have been working to encourage voting and voter education whenever possible.
IUB's Big Ten Voting Challenge aims to increase student voter registration, non-partisan education, and voter turnout in November 2020 and beyond. A school can "win" in one of two areas: greatest percentage voter turnout among eligible voters on campus or biggest improvement in voter turnout.
Themed "Defending Democracy: Confronting Voter Suppression and White Supremacy in the New Millennium," the 2020 Social Justice in America Series held a virtual town hall to discuss the importance of voting, what voting means, and why voter suppression not only happens but who it often affects. Panelists included Ash-Lee Woodard Henderson, co-executive director of the Highlander Research & Education Center, Abby Ang, founder of No Space for Hate, and IU Law professors Luis Fuentes-Rohwer and Jeannine Bell. You may watch the full town hall here.
The Black Student Union hosted a virtual event titled "Race to the Polls," which provided information on federal, state, and local levels. Panelists included Nicole Bolden, the Bloomington City Clerk, Jennifer Crossly, chairwoman of the Monroe County Democratic Party, William Ellis, chairman of the Monroe County Republican Party, and Nicole Browne, the Monroe County clerk. The panel discussed the importance of local elections and how it is easier to enact policy changes in a local community than on a state or federal level.
"Every single election is important," Browne said. "For students who go to IU, this is your home. We reach out to you and want you to reach out to us. You want to support them the way they support you."
You may watch the full panel here.
Additionally, IU published a list of IU experts who are available to discuss voting, candidates, and the election, as well as the issues that may be important to voters at the ballot box. A list of election experts featured here includes professors, historians, department chairs, scholars, and more. Their expertise ranges from fashion historians who can discuss political dress, political communication and fake news, public opinion, and American history.
Please be safe when voting, wear a mask, and maintain social distancing guidelines whenever possible.