TurboVote ranks Loyola for 2nd consecutive year for voting initiatives
| By Kate McLane
TurboVote ranked Loyola University Maryland No. 6 for the percentage of undergraduate students who signed up for TurboVote and No. 8 for the total amount of voter registration sign-ups between Aug. 1-Sept. 2, 2020.
LoyolaVotes is a non-partisan campus task force that uses an online platform called TurboVote to provide resources about voter registration, absentee ballots, and election information to students, faculty, staff, administrators, and other members of the community.
“As we prepare for a presidential election in November, we are pushing education and resources to make voting easy and accessible,” said Elise Gower, associate director of programs for the Center for Community Service and Justice. “Promoting the value of civic engagement is critical in all of the communities our students find themselves—on campus, in Baltimore, and at home.”
In addition to these rankings, Loyola was awarded the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge Silver Seal in 2019. Loyola experienced a 20-point increase between the election years of 2014 to 2018. Loyola joined more than 700 campuses across the country by entering in the ALL IN Democracy Challenge. The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge is a nonpartisan, national initiative recognizing and supporting campus as they work to increase democratic engagement and full student voter participation.
“This semester, we are focused on virtual outreach and engagement, linking students to the countless resources and opportunities available to help make a plan for voting, understand the voting process, and explore how to vote,” said Gower. “Being away from campus removes the need for an absentee ballot. In the context of voting during a pandemic, we are working to provide information about the safety and effectiveness of mail-in voting—an important alternative to voting in-person.”
In addition to the ALL In Campus Democracy Challenge, Loyola’s campaign, “Move for What Matters,” encourages students, faculty, staff, and administrators to make a commitment to an issue through movement. Share what you move for on Instagram @LoyolaVotes and use the hashtag #MoveForWhatMatters. Loyola Greyhound Athletics’ Student Advisory is also hosting a campaign to encourage students to participate in LoyolaVotes with #EveryHoundCounts.
“We’ve also launched our Be REAL campaign on Instagram. REAL is an acronym that reminds the community to be proactive about civic engagement: Register, Educate, Advocate, and Lead,” said Katie Quigley, ’22, student co-leader of LoyolaVotes. “It’s one thing to register, and it’s another to inform oneself about the political platforms of the race and encourage others to do the same. Each Monday, we highlight an issue related to voting that is often misinterpreted, or is difficult to understand through our “Misconception Mondays” initiative. Our first Misconception Monday was about voting by mail.”
Last year, TurboVote ranked Loyola No. 1 for the total number of students who registered for voter resources at the University using LoyolaVotes sign-ups.