GCC Receives ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge Awards

November 12, 2019

Today, the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge hosted its second biennial awards ceremony in Washington, DC where select higher education institutions, educators, and students were recognized for excellence in student voter engagement during the 2018 midterm elections. Award winners were selected for their exemplary leadership in supporting students form the habits of active and informed citizenship. Greenfield Community College was honored with a Best in Class for Overall Most Improved and Best in Class for Highest Voting Rates.  More than 60 institutions enrolling 6 million students are participating in the ALL IN Challenge.

“Ensuring that our students are aware of issues impacted by political decision making is important to us at GCC. In addition to hosting voter registration drives, we offer co-curricular programming on topics such as the border wall, opioid epidemic, hunger, homelessness, Veterans’ issues, and immigration. We are extremely proud of the level of civic engagement demonstrated by our students in the most recent election,” offers Associate Dean of Community Engagement, Judy Raper, Ed.D.

From 2014 to 2018 student voter participation more than doubled. Dubbed as a “remarkable midterm election” by the National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement, a research study of the Institute for Democracy in Higher Education (IDHE) at the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University. The 2018 average institutional voting rate of 39.1% is far closer to those of the last two presidential elections (47.6% in 2012, 50.9% in 2016) than to the previous midterm (19.7% in 2014) according to the school’s recent study. Data provided by IDHE shows Greenfield Community College’s voting rate increased by 47.1% in 2018 from a rate of 25.6% in 2014. GCC’s 2018 voting rate of 47.1% is also higher than the 2018 voting rate of 39.1% for all institutions. Registration rates and voting rates of registered students also increased in the same timeframe.

“We couldn’t be more proud of the outstanding recipients of this year’s ALL IN Challenge awards for their contributions to improving democratic engagement,” said Jen Domagal-Goldman, Executive Director of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge. “The rise in voter participation and engagement on college campuses in last year’s midterms and what’s sure to be a high turnout in 2020 can and will undoubtedly be tied to the hard work of the dedicated students, faculty, administrators, and partner organizations that are part of the ALL IN Challenge network.

The ALL IN Challenge strives to grow civic culture and institutionalize democratic engagement activities and programs on college campuses, making them a defining feature of campus life. The Challenge, in collaboration with higher education, seeks to:

  • Make participation in local, state, and federal elections a social norm.
  • Substantially increase the number of college students who are democratically engaged on an ongoing basis, during and between elections, and not just at the polls.
  • Make educating for nonpartisan civic learning, political engagement, and voter participation on college campuses an accepted and expected part of the culture and curriculum so that students graduate with the knowledge, skills, behaviors, and values needed to be informed and active citizens.

Learn more and see a full list of winning campuses at allinchallenge.org

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