Does your vote count? That’s the question that has become more common as Connecticut’s primary and Election Day loom closer.
Jordyn Styczynski, a sixth-semester environmental engineering major, advocates for young voter participation and believes that young voices matter.
“College students should vote because our voices are often silenced in politics. Our generation is viewed as empathetic, so it’s important for us to show up in a big way on Election Day to prove our concerns are a priority,” Styczynski says.
Young adult voters between the ages of eighteen through twenty-four have voted at lower rates than any other age group since 1962. Many students do not believe their vote matters.
Less than half of eligible young adults vote in presidential elections, according to USA Today. Young people don’t feel directly connected to their city or affected by national issues.
This presidential race, however, has found a rise in issues affecting Millennials. The next president may have a major impact on higher education, rising tuition and college debt. Young people are also starting to care about issues such as Social Security and foreign policy.
In the 2012 presidential elections, young voters between the ages of eighteen and twenty nine were key in President Barack Obama’s victory. To continue the trend, young votes should matter and they will continue to make a difference.
To register in the state of Connecticut, you must be a United States citizen, a resident of Connecticut and at least eighteen years old on or before Election Day. You can register online, by mail or in person.
One obstacle to voter participation is the fact that many individuals do not know how to vote. The lack of civic engagement is something that educational institutions need to consider if more young people will vote in the upcoming elections.
You must register to vote by April 21 online or by mail for the primary on April 26t For the national election, you must register seven days before the election date. It is important to keep your information up to date to ensure that on the day of the elections, you will be able to vote.
Also remember that Connecticut is a closed primary; you must be registered as a member of a political party to vote in their primary.
Young voters don’t believe that their votes count or matter and so that’s why people don’t vote. Some University of Connecticut students, however, remain faithful that their vote can make a difference in the primary and in the general election.
Angelica Daguplo, an eighth-semester political science major, believes that voting is important for all people.
“Voting is the very least you can do as a citizen,” she says. “If you don’t vote, you can’t complain about the issues. Period.”
Kharl Reynado is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.