McKendree University Recognized for Student Voter Engagement

A Bronze Seal from ALL IN Challenge

(LEBANON, Ill., November 8, 2017) - McKendree University has received a bronze seal from the ALL IN Challenge for achieving a student voter rate between 50 and 59 percent. The first ALL IN Challenge awards ceremony on Oct. 19 recognized colleges and universities committed to increasing college student voting rates. A list of all awardees is posted on

“McKendree is proud to receive this national recognition for our efforts,” said Dr. Christine Bahr, provost. “Our faculty, staff, administrators and students are committed to working together to reduce apathy, increase engagement, and graduate civic-minded students.”

In 2016, a university committee implemented a plan to increase informed voter participation on campus as part of the ALL IN Challenge. It held voter registration drives and presidential debate watch parties, and hosted journalist-author Sarah Kendzior to discuss the state of U.S. politics. On Constitution Day in September, students registered to vote, got information about absentee voting, and picked up free copies of “The U.S. Constitution and Fascinating Facts About It.”

“I’m excited that McKendree has a vibrant community of engaged students,” said Dr. Ann Collins, associate professor of political science. “I hear their concerns both in and out of the classroom for this country and the world. They are tuned in to the challenges that face us, and I know that they will step up to lead the way in addressing them."

Student participation in elections has increased in the past few years. A recent report, “Democracy Counts: A Report on U.S. College and University Student Voting” from the National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement, an initiative of Tufts University’s Institute for Democracy in Higher Education, shows that between the 2012 and 2016 presidential elections, student voting went from 45.1 percent of eligible voters in 2012 to 48.3 percent in 2016 – a seven percent improvement.

“I am proud to honor McKendree University with an ALL IN Challenge bronze seal in recognition of its dedication, hard work and achievement,” said Zaneeta E. Daver, director of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge. “McKendree is not only ensuring that a more representative population participates in our nation’s democracy, but is educating students to be civic-minded. They are an example to be emulated.”

The All IN Campus Democracy Challenge is a national awards program. It encourages higher education institutions to help students form the habits of active and informed citizenship, and to make democratic participation a core value on their campus. By joining, commit to:

  • Conveninga campus-wide committee that includes members from academic affairs, student affairs, and the student body, as well as any other relevant stakeholders;

  • Developing and implementingan action plan to improve democratic engagement;

  • Participatingin the National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement (NSLVE) in order to measure student voting rates; and

  • Sharing their campus’ action plan and NSLVE results in order to be eligible for a recognition seal and/or awards.

More than 300 campuses, enrolling more than four million students, have joined the Challenge since its launch in summer 2016.

Student Voter Engagement Bronze Medal