By Jade Banks, Dardinia Joseph and Darre…
By Jade Banks, Dardinia Joseph and Darrell Robinson
While President Barack Obama was encouraging the same young voters that put him in office to journey to the polls next month, various student organizations and majors on Hampton University’s campus are making sure young voters are registered.
The Student Government Association and the university’s student chapter of the NAACP have joined forces to ensure the job gets done. Last week, the organizations posted registration tables during the weekly noon-to-2 p.m. event in the student center and at the Miss Hampton University pageant.
Jeffery Eugene, a senior and SGA president, said the partnership was crucial to ensure the same success seen in the 2008 election.
“NAACP and SGA linked up so we could reach our students on campus and encourage them to vote,” said Eugene. “No matter what party.”
Although both organizations must remain non-partisan, members within each organization realize the importance of preventing the undoing of several bills passed under the Obama administration, including the health care bill.
“If we want to stay on our parents’ insurance until we are 26, we need Congress not to repeal the president’s recent health care bill,” said Charles Graves, NAACP Parliamentarian. “ And we can make sure it gets done with the people we send to Congress. Everything from the food we eat to the health care services we use to the cars we drive and the loans we pay are regulated and monitored by government.”
Although the Nov. 2 mid-term election contains several issues dealing young people, the two student organizations are finding it hard to raise awareness about the election.
“I am truly disappointed in my classmates and fellow Hamptonians this year.” said Graves. “In 2008, everybody was excited to go out to vote. People were registering early, sending in absentee ballots, and even spending their precious time at campaign offices getting ready for the election. But this year, very few of my classmates know when the election is.”
Eugene says that it’s the job of student organizations to encourage voting among their peers.
“We have to activate more blacks, young blacks in the political process,” said Eugene, “Voting is the initiation to the political process.”
Eugene believes that voting in this election will be the deciding factor for the future our country.
“This election matters because it directly affects us, the young people,” said Eugene, “We have to step up and have a voice in our future.”