Higher Education Presidents’ Commitment to Full Student Voter Participation

Higher education leaders have a responsibility to prepare students to become responsible and engaged participants in our democracy, and that includes, most importantly, to exercise the right and duty to register and to vote.

The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge has been encouraging colleges and universities since 2016 to make plans and to take action to increase nonpartisan student civic learning, political engagement, and — especially — voter participation. Over 900 campuses have risen to this challenge and institutional voting rates for colleges and universities have increased exponentially between elections. And yet, the average voting rate for a presidential election remains at 48.3%* with voter registration hovering at 70.6%.*

As a field, we can — and must — do better. That’s why the ALL IN Challenge and its Higher Education Presidents’ Council is challenging our institutions to make a visible commitment to reaching full student voter registration and voter participation in all elections. Together we can embed messages about the central importance of voting and participating as informed members of our democracy into our campus culture by including opportunities for voter registration systematically into processes that reach virtually every college student.

We are asking that college and university leaders commit their institutions to actively working toward the goal of full student participation in the 2024 election and beyond by acknowledging the following:

I commit my leadership and support to higher education stakeholders to ensure all students learn about and participate in elections.

  1. the responsibility of higher education institutions to prepare students to be informed and active citizens;
  2. the importance of the student voice in all elections (local, state, and presidential); and
  3. the need for both curricular and cocurricular experiences to shape and support the development of college students into becoming lifelong voters and engaged community members.

To achieve these goals,  I commit to providing my institution with the leadership and support to fully engage in all election- and voting-related learning opportunities, by:

  • Becoming ALL IN — Join the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge.
  • Striving toward Full Student Voter Participation — Designate staff (administration and faculty) to lead efforts to strive for full participation among the campus community.
  • Making a Statement — By signing on to the Higher Education Presidents’ Commitment to Full Student Voter Participation, college and university leaders are making visible and public their commitment to their campuses. Examples of public statements can be found here.