Every vote counts


DALLAS (SMU) – The upcoming presidential election will be the first opportunity to vote for many SMU students, including Wilson Russ, and the University is lining up opportunities for these new voters to learn more about the process. But Russ is going to learn the election system from a very personal angle – by volunteering to serve as a poll worker on Nov. 3.

“I’m very excited to vote for the first time and I’m thrilled for the opportunity to serve as a poll worker during this turbulent 2020 year,” said Russ, a sophomore studying political science, public policy, economics. He answered a call for young volunteers to help fill the gaps left by older Americans who traditionally staff polling places, but who are absent this year because they are at higher risk for serious illness due to COVID-19. 

“As someone with a fervent passion for politics, I am more than happy to stand in for those that may be at risk,” Russ said. “I believe it’s important for people to get out and vote, especially in elections such as this year's, where a great deal appears to be at stake on both sides of the aisle.”

The deadline for registering to vote in Texas is Monday, Oct. 5. SMU Libraries has put together a step-by-step guide for students, which includes absentee voting options for students who are residents of other states.  

Beginning this week SMU Libraries, the Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility, the Office of Social Change and Intercultural Engagement and SMU Athletics will host various events to encourage students to register to vote early or on election day for the 2020 U.S. general election:

 

Finding Balanced News in a Biased World

Tuesday, Sept. 15, 12:30 p.m. to 1:20 p.m., online workshop

In this online Zoom workshop, students will learn strategies for verifying news stories and discuss aspects of bias in the media. Register here for this event.

Voter Registration Drive

Thursday, Sept. 17, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Fondren Library (Dallas Hall Lawn)

SMU Libraries will partner with the Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility to provide a voter registration table where students can get quick information on how to register and vote in the 2020 election.

 

Voter Registration Pop Up Shop

Thursday, Sept. 17, 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

SMU Athletics has partnered with the SMU Library and the Simmons School of Education to host a Voter Registration Pop Up Shop inside the Hall of Champions at Loyd All-Sports Center that’s open to all SMU Athletics coaches, staff, and student-athletes.

Am I Registered to Vote? 

Friday, Sept. 18, 10:30 a.m. to noon, online event

This Zoom event will help students determine if they are registered to vote.   View the event here on Sept. 18.

Are You Ready to Vote?

Wednesday, Sept. 23, 1 p.m. to 1:45 p.m., online workshop

At this online Zoom event, students will get information on how to vote in the 2020 election, including how to register and the things they’ll need to know to cast their ballot at the polls or through the mail. Register here for this event.

Debate Watch 2020: 1st Presidential Debate
Tuesday, Sept. 29, 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., online event

Ben Voth, associate professor of communication studies and director of debate and speech programs at SMU, will host an online Zoom watch party and lead discussion of the presidential debate. Register here for this event.

Debate Watch 2020: Vice Presidential Debate
Wednesday, Oct. 07, 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., online event

Ben Voth, associate professor of communication studies and director of debate and speech programs at SMU, will host an online Zoom watch party and lead discussion of the vice presidential debate. Register here for this event.

 

Voter Registration Drive

Two voter registration events are scheduled.

Tuesday, Sept. 22, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Visit the Office of Social Change and Intercultural Engagement site for more information on this event.

 

Monday, Oct. 5, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Visit the Office of Social Change and Intercultural Engagement site for more information on this event.

 

After the Election

Friday, Nov. 06, 3 p.m. to 4/4:30 p.m., online event

More details to come regarding this panel event. Visit the Office of Social Change and Intercultural Engagement site for more information on this event.

 

ABOUT SMU

SMU is the nationally ranked global research university in the dynamic city of Dallas. SMU’s alumni, faculty and nearly 12,000 students in eight degree-granting schools demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit as they lead change in their professions, communities and the world.

 

Early voting will be available from Tuesday, Oct. 13 through Friday, Oct. 30. The two locations closest to campus are at University Park United Methodist Church at 4024 Caruth Blvd (1.7 miles from campus) and Our redeemer Lutheran Church, 7611 Park Lane (2.47 miles). Find all the early voting locations, and the hours they are open at this Dallas County site.

Dallas County will post Election Day polling places and other information https://www.dallascountyvotes.org/election-day-information/.