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Pi Sigma Alpha & Purdue Votes Coalition Team up

Pi Sigma Alpha & Purdue Votes Coalition Team Up to Get Out the Vote!

The statistics paint a bleak picture, one that has inspired a mission for several Purdue Political Science students. In the hotly contested 2016 presidential election, less than half of eligible Boilermakers voted. In the 2018 mid-term elections, less than one-third of eligible Purdue University students voted. 

With election day, Tuesday, November 3 fast approaching members of Purdue’s chapter of the Political Science National Honor Society, Pi Sigma Alpha, the Purdue Votes Coalition, and other campus organizations have begun implementing a multi-pronged strategy to get Purdue students to engage in the next election.

According to Political Science student Pravina Ravi, “We based our strategy on the framework of the Ask Every Student Initiative, National and Purdue-specific data from the National Study of Learning, and research supporting the effectiveness of classroom registration drives taking 10 or less minutes of class time.” 

The students have been invited to 150 classrooms across the West Lafayette campus to discuss, both virtually and in-person, how to register to vote. The group has even produced a short YouTube video highlighting voter registration.

The video discusses issues such voter eligibility, how to check if you are registered, how to register to vote, how to vote by mail, and what types of identification voters will need with them if they intend to vote in person. 

In addition to their work in the classroom, Pi Sigma Alpha members have also created a Right to Vote Toolkit.

According to Anna Adamsson, Pi Sigma Alpha’s campus president “The Right to Vote Toolkit includes social media post templates on how register to vote, a texting service to receive Tippecanoe County voting updates, and a 5-minute video tutorial walking through how to register to vote and create a voter action plan.”

Finally, various students are working with Count US a non-profit organization that helps new voters navigate the voting process. According to Ravi, political science major and Count Us IN intern, Amanda Shie “is helping . . . co-host a virtual event with [Count Us IN]. 

While a variety of organizations are involved in this drive to get out the vote, Political Science students are playing a key role in this project.

In addition to Adamsson, Ravi, and Shie other students involved include Ashton Cady, Logan Faircloth, Thomas Frosch, and Zeba Kokan. The student directors of the Purdue Votes Coalition are Political Scientists, Frankie Collins and Mariah Mendoza.