October 14, 2019
Demonstrating a strong political awareness and wanting their voices heard, student voter turnout at Delta College increased to 40 percent in last year’s mid-term elections, up from 22.4 percent in 2014.
A founding member of The Democracy Commitment (now Community Colleges 4 Democracy), Delta has joined other community colleges pledging to prepare students not only for careers but also for citizenship. In 2018, its efforts to engage students in the election earned the College the distinction of being a “Voter-Friendly Campus” by Campus Vote Project.
Throughout the fall 2018 semester, Delta offered programming to engage students in the election, inform them of the issues and candidates, and to challenge them to make their voices heard.
"This report provides strong evidence that Delta College students are making their voices heard in our democracy," said Lisa Lawrason, political science professor and co-campus coordinator of The Democracy Commitment at Delta College. "They are becoming a reliable voting block on Election Day and are paying attention to which candidates represent their interests and values."
Mirroring National Trends
A National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement, conducted by the Institute for Democracy & Higher Education (IDHE) at Tufts University’s Tisch College of Civic Life shows that nationwide, voting rates at participating college campuses doubled on average compared to the 2014 midterm. In 2018, the average rate among campuses in the study was 39.1 percent, nearly 20 percentage points higher than 2014’s average of 19.7 percent. Turnout increases were widespread, with virtually all campuses seeing an increase over 2014.
Other notable findings in Delta’s report was that the gap in turnout between the oldest and youngest voters closed more than 9 percentage points from 2014. Also, of students who were registered, more than 60 percent turned out to vote. In all, 66 percent of the Delta student body was registered to vote.
For more information on Voter-Friendly Campus and a complete list of all of 2019-2020 Voter-Friendly Campuses, visit Voter Friendly Campus.
For more on Community Colleges 4 Democracy at Delta or how to get involved, contact Lisa Lawrason at 989-686-9509 or firstname.lastname@example.org.