By Kacie Back
With election season approaching and some of you being first-time voters, you may have a couple questions on how it all works. I’m here to help.
1. How do I Register?
Registering to vote is pretty simple, but if you’re an out-of-state student, you may have a couple questions. If you’re living on campus, you are eligible to register with your new on-campus address, allowing you to vote in Ohio on Election Day. Keep in mind, you will have to update this address if you move dorms next year or if you plan on voting at home after this election.
There are a couple ways you can register: online, by mail, or in person. The deadline to register to vote is October 10. So, if you are newly registering, make sure you register to your on-campus address by October 10. Additionally, if you are an out-of-state student, make sure you follow the process for college voters, as listed on the Ohio Voting website. You can confirm your voter registration status on Ohio’s election website.
2. What’s on The Ballot?
This year, Ohio will have two issues on the ballot.
Issue 1 on this ballot tackles women’s reproductive rights in Ohio. A vote yes for Issue 1 would “establish a state constitutional right to make and carry out one’s own reproductive decisions,” allowing women to make their own choice when it comes to abortion, contraception, fertility treatment, and more. Voting no to Issue 1 would oppose this, giving Ohio’s government freedom when making laws and decisions surrounding women’s reproductive rights.
Issue 2 addresses the legalization of recreational marijuana use for those who are 21 years of age and older. A vote yes would agree with legalizing marijuana use, while a vote no would oppose this.
3. What do I do on Election Day?
November 7 is the General Election day. After you register to vote, you should receive a voting address—this is where you will go on Election Day. If you are a first or second-year student living in an on-campus dorm, your voting address will be The Ohio Union. Polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., meaning you have all day to find a time to head over to the Union! Once you get there, go to the voting area. There should be signage to point you in the right direction. Make sure you bring a valid Photo ID, per Ohio’s voting laws, and check in at the desk. If you have any questions while there, don’t hesitate to ask a poll worker—they’re there for you! Submit your vote and be proud that you are a participating citizen! You did it!
Hopefully this experience will get you prepared for the upcoming 2024 presidential election! Happy voting!