Arcadia Works to Get Out the Vote for Midterm Elections

By John DeRosier | October 28, 2022

The 2022 midterm elections are on Tuesday, Nov. 8, and campus groups and organizations are working to encourage and assist students in voting either by mail or at the polls.

Arcadia Votes hosted tabling events to help students register to vote

On Tuesday, Nov. 1 at 10:30 a.m. in the Laura Korman Mirror Room in Grey Towers Castle, the Center for Antiracist Scholarship, Advocacy, and Action (CASAA) and the Division of Civic and Global Engagement will host a discussion with State Representative Napoleon J. Nelson; Dr. Amy Widestrom, associate professor of Politics and Government and chair of the Department of Historical and Political Studies; Angelique Hinton, executive director of PA Youth Vote and president of the Greater Norristown NAACP; and Charles Day, a representative from Fair District PA; and students about how current policies and practices continue to suppress the Black vote. 

The panel discussion is one of several activities this fall to draw students’ attention to the midterm elections.

“We had just over 72 percent of Arcadia students vote in the 2020 election, which was higher than the national average,” said Alison LaLond Wyant, executive director of the Division of Civic and Global Engagement. “We’re really proud of that, but we know that midterm elections historically have smaller turnouts, so we’re working to raise awareness and get students to the polls or vote by mail.” 

Any registered voter in Pennsylvania can request a mail-in ballot here by 5 p.m. on Nov. 1. The mail-in ballot does not require a reason for request and must be returned and received by the Montgomery County Election Board by 8 p.m. on Election Day. In 2020, about 60 percent of Arcadia students voted via a mail-in ballot. 

Students can also request an absentee ballot by 5 p.m. on Nov. 1 if they plan on being outside of the municipality they are registered in on Election Day or if they have a disability or illness that prevents them from going to the polling place. An absentee ballot can be requested here.

The polling place for students who are registered in Glenside is the Westminster Theological Seminary at 2960 Church Road in Glenside. Civic & Global Engagement will run a shuttle from campus to the seminary on Election Day from 12 to 6pm. 

Arcadia Votes, a non-partisan, university-wide initiative to promote democratic engagement at the university, held tabling events at the Fall Welcome Week and on National Voter Registration Day to help get students registered to vote. 

The group will hold a get-out-the-vote working session on Tuesday, Nov. 1 from 2 to 3:30pm in the Civic and Global Engagement House and will have a text banking event with the Eastern Montgomery County Interfaith Coalition on Thursday, Nov. 3 from noon to 1 p.m. 

Other groups on campus who are unaffiliated with Arcadia Votes and the Division of Civic and Global Engagement are holding various activities and events around campus leading up to the election and beyond. 

A new group of faculty, staff, and students, called Arcadia Alliance for Reproductive Rights (AARR), is advocating for reproductive rights supports Arcadia students’ reproductive health decisions.

“We are a loose coalition of Arcadia community members who decided to work together because of our devastation in response to the Supreme Court decision this past summer overturning Roe vs. Wade,” said Dr. Dina Pinsky, the group’s leader and chair of the Sociology, Anthropology, Criminal Justice Department. “So far, we have four task groups, each working on separate but overlapping areas: Electoral politics education; Sexual Health and Abortion Resources; Social Media; and Liasoning with Campus Community.”

“Since we are a fledgling group, we have only had three meetings so far,” added Dr. Pinsky. “We are hoping many more students, staff, and faculty will join our alliance.”

The group can be found on Instagram and TikTok by the handle @arcadiareprorights