Students at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) are being recognized for exceptional political engagement, greatly surpassing college students' national average voting participation rate.
The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge awarded UNO with a gold seal, which recognizes campuses with a voting participation rate between 70 and 80 percent. The voting rate for UNO in the 2020 presidential election was 71.9%, which was almost six percentage points higher than the average of 66% for all higher education institutions participating in the Challenge.
“As a Carnegie Engaged metropolitan university, the civic engagement of our students has always been a priority,” Sara Woods, Executive Associate to the Senior Vice Chancellor for Community Engagement, said. “Through academic programs such as political science, international studies, and public administration, non-partisan promotion of student voter engagement through Turbovote, and campus voter registration events with community partners, we encourage our students to be informed voters and active voices in their communities.”
The award marks ongoing recognition for the level of voter participation among UNO’s student population since the 2016 presidential elections. In 2016, UNO was awarded a silver seal with a student voter participation rate of 63.4. During the 2018 mid-term elections, UNO received a gold seal for voter participation.
Initially established in 2016, 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 and institutionalize democratic engagement activities and programs, making them a defining feature of campus life.
More than 800 campuses, enrolling millions of students, have joined the challenge since its launch in summer 2016.
“Kudos to the University of Nebraska at Omaha for earning an ALL IN Challenge gold seal in recognition of its 2020 student voter turnout during the height of a global pandemic. This achievement reflects not only an engaged student body but also UNO's commitment to nonpartisan civic learning and voter participation." Jennifer Domagal-Goldman, Executive Director of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge, said.
UNO will continue to dedicate its efforts to advocating for student civic engagement through increased efforts, more voter registration opportunities, and get-out-and-vote initiatives on campus.
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.