Students can earn free goodies for their civic activism on Tuesday.
In honor of National Voter Registration Day, several organizations are hosting events across town to encourage people to register to vote.
Gators Vote Everywhere has partnered with the Bob Graham Center for Public Service, Gators for Underrepresented Voters and the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections to host a campus-wide effort to register students to vote, said Jenna Tingum, a UF statistics junior and team leader for Gators Vote Everywhere.
From 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., organizations will table across campus in places including Pugh Hall, Marston Science Library and Lawrence W. Tyree Library at Santa Fe College. Students can register to vote, request absentee ballots and update registration forms, she said.
There will be prizes to incentivize students to sign up for election reminders and pledge to vote. Prizes include an ENO hammock, tickets to the High Dive, tickets for two shows at the Hippodrome State Theatre, a Sweet Dreams gift certificate and a Satchel's Pizza gift card, Tingum said.
“We want students to understand the importance of their vote and their voice in our democracy,” the 20-year-old said.
Michelle Stein, a 22-year-old UF political science senior, is already registered to vote in Alachua County, but she plans to attend the on campus event to encourage her friends to register too.
“I’m very passionate about voting and believe it’s the easiest way for people to participate in the political process without being elected members of government,” she said.
Santa Fe College Student Government is also hosting a candidate forum in the Fine Arts Hall Lobby from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., said 20-year-old Santa Fe Student Body President, Alejandro Puga. Candidates running for Alachua County Commission District 2, Florida State House District 21, and Florida State Senate District 8 will answer questions from voters.
There are two candidates from each district confirmed to come to the forum, Puga said.
“This forum will give the chance for students to hopefully take elections seriously and realize that whoever is elected into office will vote and push for policies that will affect us all,” he said.