Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is harder for groups, like Albion’s College Democrats, to meet and host events. In anticipation of the 2020 presidential election, the Albion College Democrats are prioritizing the spread of information and awareness about voting and the election across campus.
College Democrats President Amber Zoerman, a junior from Holland, runs the organization’s Instagram page. Instagram has been one of the main tools to spread information about the election, deadlines for registering to vote and any events that the College Democrats will be hosting.
Recently highlighted on their Instagram page, the College Democrats hosted watch parties for the presidential and vice presidential debates on the quad. These watch parties gave the College Democrats the opportunity to discuss what was being said during the debates.
“We’ve really made the spreading of information a priority because while most of our regular members know this information already, we hope it can be spread to other students who might be confused about how to vote, especially in this pandemic,” said Zoerman.
The College Democrats have also hosted volunteer opportunities for those interested in the election. They’ve done remote campaigning for local candidates like Jim Haadsma and Hillary Scholten.
“A lot of our members are political science or public policy majors, so this major election has been a really good time for people to experience what working a campaign is like,” said Zoerman.
Because of Albion’s Together Safely guidelines, voting in person is not a viable option for Albion students. The College Democrats have been working to encourage their members and other students to vote absentee.
The College Democrats have worked with multiple groups on campus, including Student Senate and the American Association of University Women (AAUW), on tabling events to register students to vote and spread information about how to get an absentee ballot.
“In Michigan, you can both register to vote and request a ballot completely online, so it’s been really easy to direct anyone who has questions about it on how to get their ballot,” said Zoerman.
Because the younger generation is significantly less likely to vote than older generations, they are encouraging Albion students to vote, no matter their political affiliations.
“As the current president of the Albion Dems, it’s been really great to see how involved other people my age are in this election,” said Zoerman. “This includes going out of their way to volunteer to just vote, no matter who they are voting for.”