Casting Their First Ballots, Teen Voters Confront Pandemic’s Barriers – Education Week talks to Prof. Weinschenk
Laura Hermosilla’s first time voting won’t be at all how she pictured it.
“I always wanted to vote in-person for the first time,” said Hermosilla, an 18-year-old high school senior from Tucson, Ariz., who will instead cast her vote through a mail-in ballot, joining millions of Americans who will shift the way they vote as the nation continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic.But Hermosilla won’t stay home on Election Day. Instead, she plans to don two layers of face masks to volunteer as a poll worker, taking a spot that may have previously been occupied by an older, more medically at-risk volunteer.
Researchers have found that a person’s likelihood of voting gets stronger with each election they participate in. So encouraging young people to vote isn’t just about this election, it’s about building a pattern of lifelong civic engagement.
“Voting is habit forming,” said Aaron Weinschenk, a political science professor at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. “Once you can get people on board, they keep doing it.” See more at the source: Casting Their First Ballots, Teen Voters Confront Pandemic’s Barriers – Education Week