Hofstra University is launching a civic engagement campaign called “Hofstra Votes” to educate members of the campus and surrounding communities about important political and policy issues and encourage them to register and vote.
This effort, which includes campus voter registration drives, get out the vote activities as well as lectures, panels and other events reflecting a range of political views, begins on Wed. Aug. 29 when Hofstra, in partnership with WCBS-2, hosts the Democratic gubernatorial primary debate between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon.
Hofstra has a robust tradition of providing academic and experiential programs to learn about and participate in the democratic process, that includes hosting three consecutive presidential debates, the Kalikow Center for the Study of the American Presidency, the Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, and the Center for Civic Engagement.
“Hofstra Votes fulfills an essential part of our mission as an educational institution — to inspire and prepare our students to be active, well-informed citizens who engage with the world,” said Hofstra President Stuart Rabinowitz. “The democratic process belongs to all of us. We want our students to embrace and exercise their power to impact policy, and understand that every vote matters, including the ones not cast.”
To that end, the University is working with the Board of Elections, the League of Women Voters, the Student Government Association and other organizations, to host a wide range of speakers and events ahead of the midterm elections on Nov. 6, 2018. These include forums, panel discussions and film screenings on issues ranging from tax, trade and foreign policy to climate change, immigration and election law.
In addition to helping inform students about critical issues, Hofstra is educating students on their voting rights. A new website, www.hofstra.edu/votes, includes an online voter registration tool as well as information about absentee ballot and registration deadlines and answers to frequently asked questions about voting. It also lists a continually updated calendar of #HofstraVotes events throughout the fall semester such as in-person voter registration drives and voting machine demonstrations.