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Simpson wins Iowa Voting Challenge

Simpson enjoyed the highest voter registration rate of any campus in Iowa with 87.4 percent of students registered to vote during the 2018 midterm elections.


Simpson College boasted the highest voter registration rate of any campus in Iowa during the 2018 midterm elections and has been recognized as one of the winners of the 2018 Iowa Voting Challenge.

On the eve of local elections, Iowa Campus Compact and Civic Nation announced the winners of the 2018 Iowa Voting Challenge. Simpson's 87.4 percent voter registration rate topped all schools in the state. The challenge recognizes colleges and universities for their commitment to increasing student voting rates, helping students form the habits of active and informed citizenship, making democratic participation a core value on their campus, and cultivate generations of engaged citizens who are essential to a healthy democracy. 

Read the complete story on iacampuscompact.org.

In the 2018 election cycle, the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge partnered with Iowa Campus Compact to support campuses increasing their registration and voting rates. All Iowa colleges and universities were invited to participate in the challenge, which included signing up for National Student on Learning, Voting, and Engagement (NSVLE) to determine their registration rate and voting rate. Fourteen Iowa campuses from across the state participated.

“Thanks to the hard work and dedication of Simpson students leading our voter registration and engagement initiatives, our campus set a new record for voter registration,” said Seth Andersen, director of the Culver Public Policy Center at Simpson. “We are grateful to the Andrew Goodman Foundation, the Campus Election Engagement Project, Civic Nation, and Iowa Campus Compact for their support and encouragement of our efforts to engage students in the democratic process.”

In the 2018 U.S. midterm elections, college students turned out to vote at double the rate from the last midterm. Across more than 1,000 campuses in the NSLVE study, the average voting rate in 2018 was 40.3 percent, up over 20 points from 19.3 percent in 2014. The average 2018 voting rate at the 14 Iowa institutions participating in NSLVE and the ALL IN Challenge was 41.8 percent, slightly higher than the national average.

Simpson recorded a voting rate of 50.1 percent in the 2018 midterm elections, an increase of more than 15 percent over 2014.

Iowa & Minnesota Campus Compact strengthens the capacity of colleges and universities to fulfill the public purposes of higher education through its network of 57 campuses. This includes educating students through community and civic learning experiences and making an impact in communities through reciprocal partnerships that address community-identified goals. IAMNCC creates partnership opportunities, supports quality programming through professional development, and promotes the importance of the civic mission. For more Minnesota information visit mncampuscompact.org. For Iowa opportunities, visit iacampuscompact.org.

The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge is a national, nonpartisan initiative supporting and recognizing colleges and universities working to increase nonpartisan democratic engagement. More than 550 institutions are participating in the ALL IN Challenge which is a program of Civic Nation. On November 12, 2019, the ALL IN Challenge will host their national Awards Ceremony recognizing campuses for excellency in nonpartisan democratic engagement.