WashU Election Day Off
As Washington University prepares its students to go out into the world and become leaders, it is important for these students to engage in our democracy by voting in national elections. College students across the country have notoriously low voter turnout; according to a Tufts University study, only 48.3% of eligible college students voted in the 2016 election. 41.8% of Washington University students voted during the midterm election in 2018. To encourage every eligible student to vote, Washington University in St. Louis should follow the example set by Columbia University and Liberty University and cancel classes on Tuesday, November 3, 2020.
Without the option of early voting in Missouri, WashU voters have to dedicate several hours to cast their ballot at the on-campus polling location; canceling classes will provide students the necessary time to vote regardless of their class schedule. Students should not have to choose between going to class and participating in our democracy.
While classes should be canceled, the University should consider putting on optional lectures and discussions for students to explore topics relevant to civic engagement and voting. This initiative will provide students with the ability to vote and provide academic opportunities.
As a student at Washington University in St. Louis, I support the policy change described above…