Students at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) are being recognized as some of the most politically engaged in the country, far exceeding the national average for college-aged students.
Earlier this month, the inaugural ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge awarded UNO a Silver Seal, which recognized campuses with a voting participation rate between 60 and 69 percent in the 2016 election. UNO students’ participation rate was 63.4, which is six percent higher than the national average.
“There has always been a strong commitment to engagement on the UNO campus and there is no question that also means civic engagement,” said Barbara Pickering, Ph.D., a professor of communication and UNO’s representative for the ALL IN Challenge. “Between our political science curriculum; our debate watch events; our engaged student clubs and organizations; and our partnerships with voter registration groups, we want to make sure our students have a voice in government leadership.”
The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge is a national, nonpartisan initiative that supports and recognizes colleges and universities working to improve civic learning, political engagement, and voter participation rates. The challenge encourages institutions to help students form the habits of active and informed citizenship, as well as institutionalize democratic engagement activities and programs-making them a defining feature of campus life.
More than 300 campuses, enrolling more than 4 million students, have joined the Challenge since its launch in summer 2016.
“I am proud to honor the University of Nebraska at Omaha with an ALL IN Challenge silver seal in recognition of their dedication, hard work and achievement,” said Zaneeta E. Daver, director of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge. “UNO is not only ensuring that a more representative population participates in our nation’s democracy, but is educating students to be civic-minded. They are an example to be emulated.”
UNO plans to continue its current efforts and, beginning with the 2018 election cycle, introduce new efforts, including voter registration opportunities, get-out-the-vote initiatives and online testimonials highlighting student stories about why they vote.
Additional details about the ALL IN Challenge can be found at allinchallenge.org.
About the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Located in one of America’s best cities to live, work and learn, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s premier metropolitan university. With more than 15,000 students enrolled in 200-plus programs of study, UNO is recognized nationally for its online education, graduate education, military friendliness and community engagement efforts. Founded in 1908, UNO has served learners of all backgrounds for more than 100 years and is dedicated to another century of excellence both in the classroom and in the community.