Daemen College’s successful “Get Civically Fit” initiative culminated with students, faculty, and staff casting their votes on Election Day, and with an expert panel post-election discussion held during the week for the college community.
Classes were cancelled on Nov. 3 to give the college community the opportunity to vote on Election Day 2020. To assist students, the Daemen Division of Student Affairs provided transportation for students to the polling site.
“One of the things we pride ourselves on at Daemen is our ability to minimize obstacles students face. This was certainly true for the election,” said Dr. Greg Nayor, vice president for strategic initiatives.
According to Dr. Lisa Parshall, professor of political science who oversaw the “Get Civically Fit” effort, “Our students are intensely interested in this election, as the outcome directly impacts their future prospects and issues that are of deep concern. The excitement and desire to take part in the election was really palpable on campus — being civically engaged is something the college is committed to every day but really steps up those efforts around presidential elections as they reflect high-stakes and high interest events.”
Parshall joined fellow faculty members Dr. Penny Messinger, chair of history and political science, and Dr. Jay Wendland, associate professor of political science, in a post-election panel discussion on Election Day. The discussion focused largely on the yet to be determined outcome of the election as the country awaited final results.
As Daemen President Gary Olson noted in a recent letter to the college community, “The national election allowed people to exercise their constitutional right to exercise a voice in our country’s future, and they voted in record numbers. We want all students, faculty and staff to know that they are safe and supported. We will navigate challenges together and remain committed to open dialogue where we can listen and learn from one another.”
Parshall pointed out that on campus “Get Civically Fit” efforts to encourage students, faculty, and staff to register to vote and to educate them on the process were key to engaging the college community in the 2020 election.