New College of Florida received two national awards from the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge in recognition of the college’s high level of student voting during the 2018 election. Nearly two-thirds of New College students voted in the 2018 election, more than doubling campus voter turnout from 2014.
At a ceremony Nov. 12 at the Knight Conference Center in Washington, D.C., New College was honored with two 2019 ALL IN Champion Awards, one for the highest overall student voting rate of all participating campuses and one for the highest undergraduate voting rate of all participating campuses.
In last year’s election, 64.2 percent of the New College student body voted, compared to 29.3 percent in 2014, reflecting a nationwide trend of significantly higher voter turnout on college campuses.
New College received a platinum seal from ALL IN for achieving a student voting rate above 50 percent, and won three Best in Class Awards for highest voting rate among all participating small, four-year, public institutions, most improved voting rate among all participating small, four-year, public institutions, and highest voting rate among small, four-year public institutions.
“Our students are active participants in the democratic process,” said Student Activities and Campus Engagement Director Dani McCalla, who accepted the awards in Washington on behalf of New College. “They take very seriously their right and responsibility to vote in national, state, and local elections.”
“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.”
New College’s focus on the democratic process continues Wednesday, Nov. 13, at 6 p.m. in the College Hall Music Room, where a panel discussion on civic engagement will feature Sarasota City Manager Tom Barwin and City Commissioner Liz Alpert, who represents District 2, which includes New College. The event, part of Campus Vote Project fellowship, is being organized by the student affairs office and student government leaders.
If you have any questions about civic engagement, you can submit them to this form. If you have any other questions, contact Alexandra Barbat, president of Generation Action and vice president of diversity and inclusion.
New College hosted a series of programs last year to encourage student voter turnout. The League of Women Voters and Sarasota County Supervisors of Elections Office came to campus to register student to vote. Campus Vote Project fellows provided on-campus voter education programming, including showing the film “Rigged,” which centers on voter suppression. New College alumna Wesley Beggs, a former candidate for Sarasota County Commissioner, shared advice with students interested in government careers.