Thousands use campus ballot box to vote

More than 16,000 citizens used a campus-located ballot box to cast their votes in the Nov. 8 election. This put Seattle Central’s box in the top 12 out of 46 located throughout King County.

“The fact that this campus ballot box was so well-used speaks to the engagement of our students, faculty, staff and the community on important issues of the day, a tradition that dates to the
founding of Seattle Central,” President Sheila Edwards Lange, Ph.D., said. “It is immensely gratifying that our campus can play a role in helping so many people exercise one of their most important civic duties.”

In September, King County Elections installed a ballot drop box on Broadway beside the Broadway Edison building, giving voters the option to submit their ballots without having to pay for postage. The box will be present for the next two years and possibly for longer.

In addition to the ballot box, Seattle Central’s campus was a hub of activity this election season.
To more effectively engage and educate students about the issues and process, the college convened an elections event committee for the first time ever, spearheaded by Service Learning Coordinator Patti Gorman, to plan activities such as candidate forums.

As the point person for this effort, Patti met many students who were voting for the first time,
including a student originally from China who needed assistance.

“In the past, this student had thrown away her ballot because the process was difficult for her to
navigate. I helped her make sense of the directions, and it made me realize how overwhelming the process can be to some,” Patti said. “As an educational institution, Seattle Central has an important role to play in helping our students better understand the electoral process so they can be more informed voters.”

“We are thrilled with the level of engagement across the campus and look forward to future
election seasons,” she added.

For her efforts around voter registration and helping to secure a campus location for a ballot box,
Patti was recognized with a special, one-time Classified Development Advisory Committee
Recognition of Service award.