Tuesday marks the deadline for college students to submit applications for a new state task force that aims to increase participation among young voters.

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson recently announced the formation of the Collegiate Student Advisory Task Force and roughly 20 to 25 students will be selected from colleges, community colleges and universities around the state to serve on it. Any student attending a two or four year program is encouraged to apply but must be a Michigan resident and citizen. Passage of the “Promote the Vote” constitutional amendment last November is what spurred the new task force, which created more opportunities for people to register to vote and cast their ballot. Participants will advise on the unique challenges encountered by voters ages 18 to 24 and recommend a series of programmatic, administrative or policy changes to address identified barriers.

Benson told WHMI they’ll be looking for people who demonstrate a commitment to voting but also enthusiasm for the work they’re engaged in and getting people to vote particularly in next year’s election. She says the task force will meet three times this year between September and November throughout the state, then submit final recommendations on what could be done better and what policies could be implemented. Then in 2020, members will work with the office as civic engagement liaisons to their respective campus and communities. Benson says that means there will be connections across the state to communities at the local level to make sure they are responding to any unique needs but also doing everything they can to engage everyone in voting.

Applicants must fill out an online application and submit their resumes but also demonstrate the ability to engage with the Secretary of State’s Office and their communities through the November 2020 election. Applications are due by 3pm on Tuesday, September 3rd. A link to the application and more information is provided. (JM)