MSUToday
Published: Jan. 12, 2018

MSU ranked near top for engaged student voters

Contact(s): Elizabeth Schondelmayer CABS Integration schonde3@msu.edu, Eli Pales ASMSU commliaison@asmsu.msu.edu

In 2017, more than 400 MSU students were registered using TurboVote. The number landed MSU in the top 15 of 104 colleges/universities that used the application to engage student voters. TurboVote is an online application built by Democracy Works, an organization which strives to bring voting into the 21st century by combining the democratic process with the convenience and power of the internet.

TurboVote, the organization’s first offering, keeps track of upcoming elections in the user’s area, sends email/text reminders about deadlines and election days and helps users access important paperwork like registration forms and absentee ballots.

ASMSU began using this online platform to register student voters in 2014. Though the platform isn’t the only method MSU employs to get students registered, it has definitely helped to increase the number of students involved in elections due to its convenience.

“Since Michigan doesn't have a way to register people online to vote, TurboVote provides an accessible way to register people in the modern age using digital technology,” said Eli Pales, ASMSU community liaison. “TurboVote opens up an avenue to students to register who might not otherwise have access to a printer or to the clerk's office.”

ASMSU’s successful use of the app was recognized by the leaders of TurboVote, who sent MSU a congratulatory letter and certificate.

“It felt incredible to be recognized for our work registering students to vote on campus,” said Pales.

With the midterm elections coming up for the federal legislative as well as an election for the next Michigan governor in 2018, ASMSU is committed to continuing their work to get students registered to vote.

“We plan on expanding our initiative next year to reach as many students as possible," said Pales. "We have been brainstorming tons of ideas for events and initiatives to get MSU students registered.”

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