How to vote in the 2020 elections
Here are some resources to help you cast a ballot in the 2020 election. These links all lead to vote.org, which is a non-partisan, non-profit voting site filled with helpful information. Go there to find information on these topics and much more:
Colonial Athletic Association launches CAA Votes initiative
Back in October, the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) announced the CAA Votes initiative. Its goal is to "register student-athletes to vote and learn about the issues in the 2020 election."
A Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) from each CAA school set up programs designed to help their fellow student-athletes learn about registering and the voting process in general.
A page on the conference's website, CAASports.com/CAAVotes, was also launched as a helpful resource guide. The content on this page includes registration deadlines, absentee ballot information, voting tips and other relevant information.
As of Oct. 27, all CAA student-athletes are registered to vote.
Lauren McNamara-Clement: 'We have a voice and it's important to use it'
Autumn Johnson checks in with Campbell's Lauren McNamara-Clement to find out how the Fighting Camels will make their voices heard on Election Day. McNamara-Clement is the Big South Conference's representative on the women's basketball Student-Athlete Engagement Group, a new way to empower women athletes.
How student-athletes can make a difference
Here is Ethan Good, chair of the DI Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, on what makes this day important:
For Division I student-athletes, today will be the first time they have Election Day off thanks @Div1SAAC legislation. Chair Ethan Good discusses Civic Engagement Day and the importance of student-athletes using their voice on the latest episode of the @NCAA Social Series. pic.twitter.com/y61816xvJD— NCAA (@NCAA) November 3, 2020
Norfolk State's Symone Thomas helps others register to vote
Inspired by her grandmother, @NorfolkStVBall's Symone Thomas has spent the past several months getting her fellow students to register as well as educating them on the importance to vote.#NCAAVB https://t.co/WJt7fdQM6F— NCAA Volleyball (@NCAAVolleyball) October 15, 2020
You can read more about Symone Thomas' work to register voters in this article from the Virginian-Pilot. The redshirt sophomore is a political science major, on the honor roll and a member of the MEAC All-Academic Team.
Big West women's basketball coaches give voting advice to their younger selves
In a video shared by the Big West, the conference's women's basketball coaches gave advice to their younger selves about the importance of voting. During the PSA, which was posted to the Big West's Twitter account, coaches revisit their adolescence and implore young adults to be informed when voting in local, state and federal elections.
Their message was part of the conference's "More Than A Moment" social series, which launched back in September. The series is described as "an initiative designed to foster discussion about inequality and to highlight the work of Big West constituents." A debut episode was published Sept. 17 on YouTube.
Watch the full video below:
With Election Day just 15 days away the Big West WBB coaches take a look back at their younger selves to give advice about the importance of informed voting. Voting is always More Than A Moment™! https://t.co/r1HyuNaW1T via @YouTube— Big West Conference (@BigWestSports) October 19, 2020
Members of Buffalo Athletics' Stronger Together Task Force discuss the importance of voting
Earlier this month, members of the Buffalo Athletics' Stronger Together Task Force released a video on the importance of voting. The video, which was posted to UB Athletics' Twitter account, features student-athletes, coaches and department officials explaining why they vote.
"I vote because I have a voice," Director of Athletics Mark Alnutt said. "And I understand that I can lay the foundation for change."
A link to RockTheVote.org was also provided for those who may still need to register.
Buffalo's task force was formed back in September. The group is "devoted to create synergies amongst the department in a collaborative effort with UB student-athletes and staff."
Watch the full video below:
Oregon launches the Keep It 100 program, an initiative committed to voting
Oregon's Keep It 100 program started as an initiative to register all eligible Oregon student-athletes to vote and to inspire friends family to do the same. Half of that goal has been realized. On National Voter Registration Day, the Ducks announced that 100% of eligible student-athletes were registered for the upcoming election.
The next step in the Keep It 100 program includes 100% voter participation from student-athletes and holding a contest among student-athletes to encourage others to register to vote. Click here for the leaderboard.
Hear from the Oregon Ducks below:
Members of the Big Ten conference offer tips on how to encourage family and friends to vote
In a tweet sent out from the official Big Ten account, members of the conference discussed why voting is important to them.
Michigan State men's basketball coach Tom Izzo defined voting by saying, "It allows everyone the opportunity to be a part of the process, to have your voice heard and to taking an active role in shaping your community."
Wisconsin Associate Athletic Director said in reference to someone who is not registered to vote, "Someone who hasn't registered to vote yet, I'm gonna ask the question: Why not?"
And Alexis Sevillian of Iowa women's basketball gave her reason for voting: "It allows you to express your voice, give your opinion, reflect your beliefs and your values."
Watch the full video below:
Arizona State's Olivia Miller helped make sure 100% of the student-athletes on campus were registered to vote
Arizona State's Olivia Miller dedicated her fall to making sure 100 percent of the student athletes at Arizona State were registered to vote for the 2020 Election Day before the Oct. 5 deadline for Arizona voters.
"I want athletes to know that we have a voice outside of sport," the outfielder said. "A lot of times as an athlete, you grow up playing a sport your entire life and you get to this age and you don't know anything outside of that. So, you have to get people to realize that they have a voice and can participate and from there, how do you use your platform as a student-athlete to share the message in the bigger picture beyond athletics."
Miller, a junior, believes being a student-athlete helped her partner with the Sun Devil Athletics platform to get people on board, and noted examples such as head football coach Herm Edwards working to register the entire football team.
"At the end of the day, I just want people to pay attention to the world around them," Miller said. "The more you pay attention, the more you will know what's affecting what going on in the world and the easier it will be to make a difference."
Michigan grad Veronica Peterson built her own voting app
Michigan graduate Veronica Peterson (known as Roni Hicks when she played basketball for the Wolverines from 2008-11) coded and developed the Votable app to help voters learn more about candidates, the branches of government and how political decisions impact their own lives. Peterson earned an engineering degree in Ann Arbor and a master's degree in computer science from the University of Chicago. Peterson is profiled here in this piece on the University of Michigan's web site.
The Wisconsin Badgers will help out at the polls
Members of the University of Wisconsin women's volleyball team volunteered to be poll workers this year on Election Day. Here's coach Kelly Sheffield announcing the initiative:
Players on @BadgerVB team have decided to sign up to work the polls on Election Day. We’d love to see student-athletes all across the country, whose seasons have been postponed, join us in supporting their communities. #vote— Kelly Sheffield (@KellyPSheffield) August 26, 2020
Younger people volunteering to work at the polls is even more impactful during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nearly 60 percent of poll workers in the 2016 election were older than 60, according to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. The risk for severe illness from COVID-19 increases with age, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
NCAA DI student-athletes will have Election Day off, every year
NCAA student-athletes will have off the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November every year because of civic-engagement legislation proposed by student-athletes and approved by the DI council in its September meeting.
You can hear Justice Littrell explain more about the initiative in the video above. He is a student-athlete representative on the Division I Council, a criminal justice major and linebacker at the University of Northern Colorado.
"Student-athletes across the nation in Division I are leaders ... We gather attention and attention finds its way to us. Being able to use that attention for good and to be able to go out and help the community, to be the change we want to see, that's exactly why this was proposed."
Here's an easy way to find election-related information
Here are some links to official, non-partisan election resources:
- USA.gov has a helpful guide here with links to every state and territory's local election office. That's where you can find more information about how, where and when to vote.
- The Federal Election Commission is the place to go for campaign-finance resources and history of federal elections. All fundraising reports for Presidential and Congressional candidates are here, too.
- Here are the final electoral maps for every Presidential election in the country's history.