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Younger Citizens Vote Less
by Gabrielle Huff
October 18, 2020
TOLEDO, Ohio - As of the 2016 election, millennials, those aged 20 to 35, make up the second largest electorate group in the nation. With approximately 62,000,000 members, only the Baby Boomer generation surpasses them, boasting a group of more than 70,000,000 Americans, according to the Pew Research Center.
For decades, the United States Census Bureau has tracked and reported voting patterns for U.S. elections. Since the 1960’s, 18-29 year old voters have voted far less than any other age group, usually anywhere between 40% to 50%.
In the 2016 presidential election:
These statistics depict the large discrepancies in voting turnout that is present in terms of age.
Out of these statistics, there is some promise for younger voters in America. The 18-29 year old voting block was the only group that saw an increase in voter turnout out
from the 2012 to 2016 election, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. 45% voted in 2012, compared to 46.1% in the 2016 election. All other age groups saw a decline in voter turnout.
Nationwide, there are many efforts to encourage younger voters to head to the polls, which could explain this increase in turnout. One of these is the Campus Vote Project, a nationwide nonprofit organization that works on college campuses to encourage voting and reduce any barriers that may be affecting college students’ ability to vote.
Their website states the organization’s mission, which is, “Campus Vote Project works with universities, community colleges, faculty, students and election officials to reduce barriers to student voting. Our goal is to help campuses institutionalize reforms that empower students with the information they need to register and vote.”
March 4th, 2021
by Lexi Almaraz
TOLEDO, Ohio - The University of Toledo will be expecting it’s third virtual commencement in the spring.
The University decided that the safest way for a graduation was to make it completely virtual.
If UT decided to have an in-person commencement and then be told there was another spike in COVID cases, they would not be prepared to have a commencement for the Spring.
“It is not an easy decision. It’s not a decision we take lightly. We want our graduates to know they are important to us, we’re proud of them, we want this experience to be very special for them but it’s not an easy situation in terms of the planning,” Vice Provost, Dr. Amy Thompson said.
They must have time to prepare and produce what needs to be done before the graduation.
Victoria Houston started a petition for the upcoming graduates to walk for commencement in the spring.
She hoped that the petition allows the University to see how students feel about the decision to be virtual.
With the athletes allowed to play their sporting events, Houston thinks that the academic achievement should be recognized by being in person.
“You know every college student dreams of walking across the stage so for that to be taken away from us while I get COVID is very you know – COVID has done it’s damage but I feel like some considerations can be made to allow for us to still walk across the stage,” senior Nadia Shelton said.
Houston wishes the petition will have an impact on the University’s decision.
“With the petition at least there is going to be a conversation around spring commencement in a pandemic and I think at least that conversation will make some students and seniors feel better about their graduation prospects and how that’s going to look going forward into their future,” she said.
Commencement will still be held virtually.