Button designed by the Office for Community and Civic Engagement to promote voter registration on campus. Photo/Dalton Hoffer
By Zachary C. Young, Editor-in-Chief
Sept. 22 is National Voter Registration Day, a non-partisan civic holiday dedicated to celebrating democracy. Every fourth Tuesday in September is designated for the holiday. Since being established in 2012, over 3 million voters have registered on National Voter Registration Day, with 1.3 million of those coming between 2018 and 2019.
With mail-in ballots being a hot take on the political landscape, UNCP students should be aware that North Carolina is a no-excuse absentee ballot state. This means as a registered voter, you can request an absentee ballot without having to provide a reason.
Kobi Kelley, UNCP Votes Chair, feels that this country’s youth can play a vital role in election outcomes.
“This generation has the most potential political power in the election this upcoming November, meaning we have the ability to sway elections in various states. So, it is essential that we get as many students registered to vote by October 9,” said Kelley, a Junior at UNCP.
A Tufts University study shows that North Carolina has been ranked third among states where young people can make the largest impact on voting. The National Study of Learning, Voting and Engagement (NSLVE) is an initiative of Institute for Democracy and Higher Education at Tufts University. Their report of UNCP showed that the registration rate among students was 71.2% in 2018, with only 44.6% of those actually voting on election day.
Students with a North Carolina state-issued ID or Driver’s License are eligible to register online. Students without these forms of ID should follow the link below and fill-out the form. Once completed you will print and mail to your local board of elections office. Once you are officially registered, you should receive a voter registration card in the mail.
The Board of Elections requires that students who live on campus and wish to register must use their 911 address. Your 911 address should read as follows, Address: (Room #), (Building #) (Street), (Hall), Pembroke, N.C., 28372.
To find the number for your building, refer to the image below. Students are encouraged to provide a secondary mailing address, such as their parent/guardian’s address.
North Carolina has proven to be a battleground state with President Trump campaigning in the Tarheel state three times in one month. North Carolina has been a close call in past elections, with 15 electoral votes to the winner. Mitt Romney narrowly beat out former President Obama in 2012 by only 2% and President Trump won North Carolina over Hillary Clinton by only 4% in 2016.
According to the North Carolina State Board of Elections website, there are 4.7 million registered voters in the state, slightly less than half the total state population.
This is the first year that North Carolina has allowed voter registration to be done online. You can register by clicking here. If you are unsure and wish to check your registration status, please click here.
For other important dates, click here.