Westminster Students Use Creative Tactics to 'Get Out the Vote'
Events include movie screenings, debates, masquerades and patriotic pets
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Krista DeAngelis (801) 832-2682
Oct. 20, 2008
SALT LAKE CITY– College students across the nation are getting involved in this year’s election in a variety of ways, and Utah students are no exception. From open mic debates, to “dress like your favorite political character day," students at Westminster are coming out in droves to support their favorite candidate and promote electoral activism.
Over the past few months, Westminster students have been gathering in the residence halls to watch each political debate. The college has offered a class this semester entitled “Presidential Elections: Strategy and Substance” that focuses on basic theories involved in the electoral process. Student booths have been set up to encourage students to register to vote. And most recently, Westminster’s Social Science Club has announced a variety of events focused on raising awareness of issues leading up to the ‘big’ day.
Jillian Samels, Social Science Club member, explained that hosting these events is important because demographically young people don’t tend to vote.
“We really aren’t as apathetic to politics and government as textbooks would like you to believe,” she said. “Voting is one of the simplest ways to be effective in the community. There are a lot of people in this country and in other countries who wish they could vote but can’t. Certain groups have fought and died for the right to vote and some [people] overlook that.”
Samuels also mentioned that Westminster students, as well as high school students, are very energized about this particular election year.
“My cousin just turned 18 and her friends are jealous that she gets to vote,” she said. “Barack Obama’s campaign is really targeting young people. I have friends who get text messages from his staff on things he’s doing here in Utah.”
Some of the political events Westminster’s Social Science Club will host from October 20 through November 4 are:
Oct. 20 – Nov. 4, 2008
The Social Science Club will be collecting questions about candidates, issues, etc., in a box at the concierge desk. Members will research and email responses to the person, as well as post the Q&As to a free speech board.
Screening of "Iron-Jawed Angels"- winner of a Golden Globe Award
Oct. 27, 2008
Malouf 201, Reception at 7:30 p.m.; Film Screening at 7:45 p.m.
This 2004 movie starring Hilary Swank follows a group of defiant young activists who take the women's suffrage movement by storm, putting their lives at risk to help American women win the right to vote.
The Great Debate- Political Open Mic Event
Oct. 29, 2008 7-8 p.m.
Speakers will be allowed four minutes to talk about any politician/issue. The group hopes to have a rotation of Republican, Democrat and Independent participants.
Dress up like your favorite political figure day
Oct. 30, 2008
Students are encouraged to take a political slant to Halloween by adorning costumes of favorite political figures, such as: Jackie O, Monika Lewinsky, George Bush, Richard Nixon, Abraham Lincoln, etc.
This all-day event is in conjunction with Phi Alpha Theta, the History Honors Society.
Nov. 4, 2008
The Westminster community is encouraged to bring their dogs to campus and dress them in patriotic paraphernalia to encourage people to get out to vote.
Media interested in the following events can contact Krista DeAngelis at (801) 505-3213 or Laura Murphy at (801) 832-2685.
Westminster is a nationally recognized, comprehensive liberal arts college. With a broad array of graduate and undergraduate programs, Westminster is distinguished by its unique environment for learning. Westminster prepares students for success through active and engaged learning, real world experiences and its vibrant campus community. Westminster’s unique location, adjacent to the Rocky Mountains and to the dynamic city of Salt Lake, further enriches the college experience. For more information, visit www.westminstercollege.edu.