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Political Science Major Named to 2023 ALL IN Student Voting Honor Roll

Texas Lutheran University and the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge (ALL IN) announced that Junior Political Science major Isabella Schaar has been recognized as part of the 2023 ALL IN Student Voting Honor Roll. The ALL IN Student Voting Honor Roll awards college students doing outstanding work to advance nonpartisan democratic engagement at participating campuses. Schaar, a Democracy Fellow through the Campus Vote Project, joins a group of 175 students recognized for their voter registration, education and turnout efforts ahead of last year’s historic midterm elections. The 2022 midterm elections saw one of the highest youth turnout rates for a midterm election in the past 40 years — an estimated 23 percent of young people ages 18 to 29 turned out to vote.

"My parents have always taught me the importance of voting and once I voted in my first election, the 2020 presidential election, voting became a personal passion of mine that only grew as I joined Campus Vote Project," Schaar said. "Through Campus Vote Project, I have attended webinars, conferences, and discussion blocks for three semesters now while also working for TLU's Center for Servant Leadership as the Student Coordinator for Voter Registration & Civic Engagement."

The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge empowers colleges and universities to achieve excellence in nonpartisan student democratic engagement. With the support of the ALL IN staff, campuses that join the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge complete a set of action items to institutionalize nonpartisan civic learning, political engagement and voter participation on their campus. The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge currently engages more than 9.8 million students from more than 965 institutions in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

“This year’s honorees played a crucial part in registering and empowering student voters ahead of last year’s midterm elections, resulting in historic turnout among young voters. The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge is honored to celebrate hundreds of student leaders encouraging nonpartisan democratic engagement across the country,” said Jennifer Domagal-Goldman, Executive Director of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge. “These students organized voter registration drives, coordinated campus-wide voter engagement resources, and brought polling locations to their campuses. We are excited to watch these students continue to change the world.”

Schaar says the most important lesson she has learned while working in the civic engagement space is that not everybody interested in civic engagement and election education is eligible to vote.

"This specifically applies to students who don't have American citizenship or students who are not old enough yet," she said. "This should not prevent them from engaging in voter education. There are many ways for students to be involved without having to cast a vote, whether it is volunteering with an elections office or attending information sessions."

Her biggest piece of advice for students interested in voter engagement is that there is a place for everybody in this educational space for all political affiliations, voter registration eligibility or not, etc.

"Voting is the best way for us to be involved in our democracy," she said. "Voter registration and election education is a misunderstood community, often met with reluctancy. If there was a better understanding of the electoral process, voter registration and turnout would only go up."

ABOUT ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge:

ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge (ALL IN) empowers colleges and universities to achieve excellence in nonpartisan student democratic engagement. Through an intentionally designed program that provides structure, support, and recognition, ALL IN works to improve civic learning, political engagement, and voter participation on more than 965 campuses nationwide. ALL IN believes higher education should play a role in developing an active and informed citizenry by educating students, motivating them to engage in American democracy, and instilling the value of lifelong participation. ALL IN is an initiative of Civic Nation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Campuses can join ALL IN here.