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JMU president takes on nationwide leadership role for student voter registration

Crystal Graham
young people voting
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James Madison University is joining other colleges and universities in an effort to have their full student body registered to vote in the 2024 presidential election.

JMU President Jonathan R. Alger will serve on the President’s Council for the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge in 2024. Alger joins 13 college and university presidents charged with supporting senior leaders in higher education to foster nonpartisan democratic engagement on their campuses.

The council will lead more than 625 college and university presidents, provosts and chancellors who have committed to participation in the 2024 elections.

“This recognition underscores JMU’s commitment to fostering civic engagement and empowering students to be active participants in our democracy,” said Alger. “The ALL IN challenge aligns with our belief in the importance of civic education and the role that higher education institutions play in preparing the next generation of informed and engaged citizens. We look forward to collaborating with other institutions and advancing initiatives that promote civic learning, dialogue and action on our campus and beyond.”

An estimated 8 million young people will have their first opportunity to vote in 2024.

“We want to make sure every college student can cast their ballot,” said Jennifer Domagal-Goldman, executive director of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge. “Higher education leaders have a critical role to play in creating a culture of nonpartisan civic engagement and voter participation on their campuses.”

Leaders pledge to:

  • Strive toward full student voter participation by designating staff to lead this effort among the campus community;
  • Acknowledge the importance of students’ voice in all elections, preparing students to be informed and active citizens and creating experiences to help students become lifelong voters;
  • Empower faculty, staff, students and community stakeholders to come together and determine solutions to the problems communities face;
  • Educate voters to make informed decisions about issues and candidates in presidential, national, state and local elections; and
  • Actively participate in a democratic engagement action plan to bolster an institutional culture that supports curricular and co-curricular involvement in the electoral process.
  • The members have committed to supporting all institutions with nonpartisan full student voter participation efforts.

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.