The University of Nebraska–Lincoln was named a 2023-24 Voter Friendly Campus, one of 258 campuses in 38 states and the District of Columbia by Fair Elections Center's, Campus Vote Project and NASPA — Student Affairs Administrators.
The initiative recognizes institutions that have planned and implemented practices that encourage their students to register and vote in the 2022 elections and in coming years.
The mission of the 2023 Voter Friendly Campus designation is to bolster colleges and universities’ efforts to help students overcome barriers to participating in the political process — every year, not just during years featuring federal elections. Nebraska was evaluated based on a written plan for how the Husker Vote Coalition planned to register, educate and turnout student voters in 2022, how they facilitated voter engagement efforts on campus, and a final analysis of the efforts.
“It’s important for our students to be civically engaged, and that begins with voting,” said Andrew Brown, assistant director of community engagement and adviser of Husker Vote Coalition. “I’m proud that UNL and our Husker Vote Coalition has received the Voter Friendly Campus honor, and I am thankful for the students, staff and faculty that have made such a difference in getting our students prepared to participate in the electoral process.”
As part of the effort to be designated a Voter Friendly Campus, the Husker Vote Coalition collaborated with student groups, academic colleges, athletic teams and departments across the institution to embed voter engagement across the university. The Husker Vote Coalition integrated an online voter information portal to help students stay updated about elections.
Students were critical to the 2022 general election engagement success. The Husker Vote Coalition's executive committee is made up of Brown and five student leaders: Ken Bartling, Madison Hurst, Maggie Nielsen, Ivan Molina Jr., and Luke McDermott. Together, the committee recruited more than 40 additional students to serve as vote ambassadors, who registered students to vote, coordinated educational events and compiled individual projects to support sustained student voter engagement in partnership with the Lancaster County Election Commission. In addition, a team of students served on Election Day in 2022 by monitoring polling sites located on or near campus, gathering information regarding the voting process and accessibility of polling places in partnership with Civic Nebraska.
The coalition is eager to continue engaging students through 2023, 2024 and beyond.
“This recognition exemplifies the hard work, attention to detail, and dedication of our student leaders, our staff and administration, and each and every Husker on our campus. It is truly an honor to be recognized as a Voter Friendly Campus,” said Bartling, a sophomore political science and economics major from Hastings, and student chairman of the Husker Vote Coalition.
The institutions designated Voter Friendly Campuses represent a range of two-year, four-year, public, private, rural and urban campuses, collectively serving more than 3.5 million students.