The members of Drexel Votes, a broad-based coalition of student organizations, schools, colleges and administrative offices committed to encouraging the entire Drexel University community to vote, have already reminded Dragons to register to vote, as well as encouraged students to make their vote count in this year’s presidential election.
Now, as we look toward Election Day only a week away, the committee wants to point out that it’s not only important to review and finalize your own voting plan, but also to inspire and help enable others to do the same.
Here are three ways that Drexel Votes would encourage Dragons to take action or check in with others before Nov. 3:
There are numerous ways to volunteer your time to support our democratic process around Election Day. A good place to start is with our very own Lindy Center for Civic Engagement. Check out their volunteer hub to explore opportunities that could not only make a difference, but also for which students could gain civic engagement credits or professional staff members could use their Civic Engagement Leave hours. You can also find more information and opportunities on the Drexel Votes website.
Drexel Votes also recently co-hosted a Voting Town Hall with the nonpartisan civic leadership organization Committee of Seventy to instruct and answer questions about voting options in Pennsylvania and present more ways to get involved in the community. One volunteer organization that Chief Advancement Officer Lauren Cristella mentioned during the event was Fairmount Votes, which, despite its name, provides general assistance to increase voter engagement across the city.
“They’re doing phone banking and texting and other things you can just do from the comfort of your home,” Cristella said during the event. “There’s fantastic trainings, through Common Cause, a lawyers committee. So you could do that in-person on Election Day, or you can answer questions beforehand. I think those are really great options.”
Another way to make an impact beyond casting your own ballot and a difference around voting in your community is to start with the ones closest to you. Start by checking in with friends and family to make sure they have voted or have a voting plan. You can sign up with Rock the Vote to even receive a reminder to text three friends about voting. This outreach method, called “vote tripling,” is proven to have an impact and increase the number of people at the polls. Students can join the Campus Election Engagement Project (CEEP) fellows this week on Oct. 29 for a night of friend banking, or send reminder texts to loved ones about voting.
"Reaching out to a friend is twice as powerful as reaching out to a stranger,” said Sarah Resanovich, a fourth-year hospitality management student and a CEEP fellow for 2020. "In this moment, you have the opportunity to further your impact by making sure your friends, family and community members are also ready to cast their ballots. We have the chance to help create a future that we want to see for our country. By taking actions now, you can go into Election Day knowing that you made an impact and helped contribute to the civic processes that uphold democracy. Showing up and taking action will also demonstrate the power we have to give back to their communities and influence our government.”
Drexel Votes has made it easy for students, faculty and professional staff to share resources with fellow Dragons and their community for anyone with questions or struggling to solidify their voting plan.
Share this QR code to direct people to the resources on the Drexel Votes website.
Share the information above, or print out the flyer and distribute to your classmates, neighbors or anyone who’s unsure about how to vote. You can also use the QR codes to easily encourage individuals to check out the Drexel Votes website and the wealth of information it has to offer.
Know someone who might have mobility issues casting their ballot or getting to the polls? Drive Your Ballot is a nationwide organization that helps connect people with rides to the ballots AND satellite drop-off location. You can print flyers that have both a phone number and a QR code where people can get more info on accessing these resources.
Finally, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s office has setup an Election Task Force hotline for people to report any criminal attempts to interfere with, influence or thwart safe voting or elections activity. That number is 215.686.9641. Members of the public are encouraged to report activity to the Task Force as well as the national nonpartisan Election Protection hotline at 866.OUR.VOTE.
Larissa Mogano, senior media and video technologies specialist for Drexel Information Technology and a member of Drexel Votes, said utilizing and sharing resources can help prevent people from feeling disenfranchised from exercising their right to vote.
"COVID-19 and other circumstances have made this particular Election Day especially daunting,” she said. “I know I have a lot of older neighbors who are most comfortable voting in person because it’s how they’ve always done it, but since they’re high-risk, I want to make sure they are able to get to the polls safely and can maintain safe distances from voters and election workers.”