On National Voter Registration Day, New Report Touts USD Voting Surge in 2018

On National Voter Registration Day, New Report Touts USD Voting Surge in 2018

Today, September 24, is National Voter Registration Day. Across the country, civic-minded Americans are hosting events, canvassing and taking to social media in an effort to encourage people to register to vote.

Among those are students at the University of San Diego, the ones wearing their USD Votes t-shirts, who are staffing six stations across campus today between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. and encouraging fellow Toreros to register to vote.

Officials with USD Votes hope their efforts are as successful as the results were in the 2018 election. According to a new report, student voting at USD saw a dramatic change, increasing from a rate of 16.9 percent in 2014 to 45 percent in 2018. While college student turnout doubled nationwide in the same period, USD students turned out at 5.9 percent above the national average, up from 3.6 percent below the national average in 2014. View the full USD campus report from Tufts University’s Institute for Democracy and Higher Education.

The transformation in USD’s voter turnout is also a direct result of USD Votes — a voter engagement effort by student volunteers, faculty and administration with the ambitious goal of getting every eligible USD student to register to vote. USD Votes seeks to continue its momentum for the 2020 primary and presidential elections through information sessions, peer-to-peer outreach, seminars, online interaction systems and canvassing.

“As a university, I think we have a responsibility to teach students the habits of responsible citizenship, and voting is one of those habits,” says Casey Dominguez, PhD, an associate professor in the political science and international relations department who helps lead USD Votes.

The report is part of the National Study of Learning, Voting and Engagement (NSLVE), conducted by the Institute for Democracy & Higher Education (IDHE) at Tufts University’s Tisch College of Civic Life. It is the only national study of college student voting. It is based on the voting records of more than 10 million students at more than 1,000 colleges and universities in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

On Oct. 26, USD will also be hosting Voice of San Diego’s Politifest, an event open to the public that will bring experts to campus to facilitate conversations around local topics such as housing, homelessness and mass transit.

— Lissette Martinez

Video by Allyson Meyer '16

Contact Information