Educate & Act

This series features experts on different aspects of US democracy, and centers opportunities for civic engagement. It is intended to help demystify elements of the systems and processes at work in the US democracy. It is co-led by The Commons, the Center for Service Learning, and the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity. Programs in this series feature campus researchers as well as specialists beyond the University.

2020 Student Voting Rates & Trends at KU

What is the National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement (NSLVE)?
How has KU student voter turnout changed in the last four years?
What can campus and community partners do to support student voting in the 2022 mid-term election?
How does KU partner with other institutions and national organizations to promote student voter engagement?

Kate Kemper, Assistant Director at the Center for Service Learning, shares data and implications on KU student voting rates in 2020.


2020 Student Voting Trends Promotion

Changes to Election Participation in Kansas

What does House Bill 2183 say?
How will it change voting in Kansas?
Where does litigation about the bill stand now?
How does it apply to campus organizations?
How does this bill compare to new legislation in other states?

Panelists:
Steve Allton (he/him), Office of the General Counsel, KU
Patrick Miller (he/him), Political Science, KU
Birdie Alt (she/her), KU Student Senate
Peyton Browning (she/her), Prairie Roots

House Bill 2183 Promotion

Climate Policy & Action

How is local government responding to climate change?
How does legislation around climate get started?
Which local organizations are working on advocacy?
How can students get involved in climate policy action?
How do research and classes contribute to policy in action?

Panelists:
Melek Ben-Ayed (he/him), Mechanical Engineering Students / KU Sunrise Movement Vice President
Connie Fitzpatrick (she/her), Douglas County Sustainability Office
Lisa Larsen (she/her), Environmental Geologist / Lawrence City Commissioner
Ward Lyles (he/him), KU School of Public Affairs & Administration / Center for Compassionate & Sustainable Communities

Climate Policy & Action

Civic Participation for International Students & Scholars

How does the "global Jayhawk" identity inform engagement in U.S. civic life?
How do U.S. political affairs and policy influence the day-to-day life of international students and scholars?
What are opportunities and limits to international community members' participation in community and civic engagement in the U.S.?

Panelists:
Jawad Ahmed Obaid (he/him/his), IT Project Manager, Center for Community Health and Development
Monica Mendez (she/her/hers), Research Assistant, Center for Community Health and Development / Community Mobilizer, Latino Health for All Coalition
Priya Vanchy (she/her/hers), Graduate Research Assistant, Center for Community Health and Development / Graduate Student, Applied Behavioral Science
Navya Singh (she/her/hers), Undergraduate Student, Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology / Director of Volunteering and Service, Honors Community Advocates / Student Ambassador, Center for Sexuality and Gender Diversity
Tamara Doubra Anoruse-Thomas (she/her/hers), Undergraduate Student, Microbiology / President, KU LEAD UP

Moderator:
Tiffany Learned (she/her/hers), ISS Programming Coordinator

Civic Participation for International Students and Scholars

Queering the Vote

What considerations and policies would exist in a queer and trans-inclusive political platform?
What issues disproportionately effect queer and trans individuals? How are they showing up on the ballot in Douglas County, Kansas, and at the state and federal levels?
How does LGBTQIA+ identity influence and inform political engagement?
What has LGBTQIA+ voter engagement looked like in the past? What efforts are being made to bolster engagement in the electoral process?

Panelists:
Ellie Grace (she/her), The Voter Network
Sarah Myose (they/them), URGE Kansas
Kristopher Oliveira (he/him), Center for Sexuality and Gender Diversity
Don Haider Markel (he/him), Political Science
Patrick Miller (he/him), Political Science

Queering the Vote

The Feminist Agenda

What would your political platform for a feminist future look like?
What issues disproportionately affect women, children, and gender minorities?
How can a feminist platform incorporate these issues?
Is zine-making a feminist practice?

Panelists:
Divya Radhika Bhalla (she/her), PhD Student, Creative Writing
Rachel Sandle (they/them), Local Feminist Zinester
An Sasala (ze/zir & they/them), Alum, MA in Film & Media Studies
Isaac Thomas (he/him), Alum, BA in Linguistics
Miguel Roel (he/him), Volunteer, Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity

Moderator:
Meg Williams, Assistant Director, Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity

The Feminist Agenda

Voting from the Margins

What are barriers to participation?
How does identity inform your political engagement?
What does voting mean to you?
What might you suggest for new voters?

Panelists:
Juan Ramiro Sarmiento, KU Alumnus
Tezbah Smiley, Center for Sexuality & Gender Diversity
Shannon Portillo, School of Public Affairs & Administration

Voting from the Margins

The Voting Process

What are the primaries like in Kansas?
How can I vote if I’m away from home?
How can I participate in advance voting?
What are the important deadlines I need to know?
What are trends in voter turnout on campuses?
What should I expect to see in my polling place?
How does a KU affiliation affect my involvement?

Panelists:
Alejandro Rangel-Lopez, KU Student
Kelly Whitten, KU State Relations
Jamie Shew, Douglas County Clerk
Patrick Miller, KU Department of Political Science

The Voting Process

Understanding the Census

How is census data used?
How do the results affect the population?
What is the process for collecting information?
Who plays a role in the process?

Panelists:
Tiara Floyd, Student Body President
Donna Ginther, Economics / Institute for Policy & Social Research
Xan Wedel, Institute for Policy & Social Research
Virginia Phillips, US Census Bureau

Understanding the Census