Student-led political group Texas Rising hosted the first in a biweekly series of events for students to become registered voters, ready to perform their civic duty in the upcoming presidential and local elections.
The group set up a table table on Academic Plaza from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m on Sept. 24 as part of National Voter Registration Day. According to Guerrero, the A&M chapter is looking to register 300 students, with the state chapter of Texas Rising aiming to register 5,000 citizens throughout Texas. Other organizations working with Rising Texas to meet this goal include Council for Minority Student Affairs, Aggies Vote and Feminists for Reproductive Education and Equity.
Victoria Guerrero, the co-president of A&M’s chapter of Texas Rising, said the organization is focusing on registering voters and raising political awareness on campus.
“Texas Rising is a non-partisan, progressive organization that advocates for issues like LGBTQ equality, voting rights, reproductive freedom, immigration and criminal justice reform, just to name a few,” Guerrero said. “We are a student-led organization, so we have chapters all across Texas, and the Texas A&M chapter is brand new, we just opened it up this semester, and we’re super excited.”
Texas Rising is in the process of creating a voter guide that simplifies the voting process and informs students on ways to get more involved politically. Students will be able to register throughout the semester on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the MSC from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Guerrero said.
“We’re really fortunate here at A&M to have a polling place on campus because we are a very large university, but that isn’t the case with universities around Texas,” Guerrero said. “Combined with Gen Z and Millennials, [students] will become the largest group of voting people in the United States, which will surpass the Baby Boom generation.”
Steven Good, a technology management senior, registered to vote with Texas Rising in Academic Plaza. Good served in the military under the Obama administration and noticed the changes that occurred over time as a result of voting and political shifts.
“Registering to vote is important all in all,” said Good. “I’m former military, so I’ve always found that elections and things like this matter more than you think. I think it really matters who your leaders are. It was important to me who my commander-in-chief was, so it matters to me now who’s still in charge and out there.”
Texas Rising is looking to make registration convenient for students by providing the documents on campus. Good said it’s incredibly important that these on-campus resources are available to students.
“A lot of people don’t know where to get the documentation and how to get it mailed to them,” Good said. “All in all, often people from my generation, either anywhere from Millennials to Gen Z, have a hard time getting that kind of information. … So having it available on campus is a huge thing.”
Engineering freshman Vanessa Perez was walking back from class when she stopped to register to vote.
“It’s really great because I was going to wait until I went back to my hometown to register, but now I can do it here on campus,” Perez said. “I’d like to do it. I think everybody should. It’s really cool that this is here on campus.”