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The Ticker

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The Ticker

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Looking towards a more civically engaged CUNY

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A total of 14 CUNY colleges served as early polling sites in late October and as voting sites for Election Day. CUNY has demonstrated a strong effort to increase voter education among its students. Still, it should continue to emphasize and create more initiatives to help students be able to vote.

CUNY VOTES is a non-partisan initiative with a mission to promote voter participation and awareness through campus-based partnerships. The website for the initiative offers resources such as guides on what is on the ballot for the election and how to register to vote. Through the initiative, each CUNY school is provided with a CUNY Voter Registration Coordinator.

Promoting the importance of these coordinators is vital. CUNY should continue increasing the variety of events it hosts concerning voter education. One of these events could focus on absentee and early voting for both its in-state and out-of-state students.

In New York City, the deadline to request an absentee ballot in person was Nov. 6 and Oct. 23  online. For a vote to count towards the total, a ballot must be postmarked by Nov. 7 and received by Nov. 14.

Student-driven events would enrich the connection between CUNY colleges and its student body. An event focused on absentee ballots would be beneficial for not only students who may be out of the city, but also for students who face accessibility issues when attempting to vote in-person.

As of fall 2022, over 11,000 students enrolled in a CUNY school were out-of-state residents. The students faced confusing and inconvenient rules when attempting to vote in local, state and federal elections as they aren’t as accustomed to the city.

CUNY holds a unique opportunity to help guide these students through the process of obtaining an absentee ballot to ensure their votes are counted and they should take advantage of it.

Additionally, CUNY should consider alternative ways to help its students engage in the election process. In NYC, K-12 schools close down their buildings to be used as voting sites on Election Day. If a similar policy was employed for CUNY schools, where a majority of students commute, it would ensure every student has the time to go out and vote.

It’s important for CUNY to continue expanding on its current initiatives aimed at getting students civically engaged.

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  • W

    Who you think this is.Dec 15, 2023 at 7:19 am

    Toward, not towards.