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Voting, Registration Rates Increase Among WIU Students

September 24, 2019

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MACOMB, IL – Voting among Western Illinois University students increased from 15.2 percent to 30.3 percent between the 2014 and 2018 midterm elections, according to the National Study of Learning, Voting and Engagement (NSLVE).

The national study, conducted by the Institute for Democracy and Higher Education at Tufts University, reported voter registration among WIU students increased from 66.7 percent in 2014 to 73.1 percent in 2018.

The voting level in 2018 was 25.4 percent among undergraduate students and 41.4 percent among graduate students.

"I am pleased to see that Western Illinois University students are becoming more involved in the political process and making their voices heard," said WIU Departments of Political Science and History Interim Chair Keith Boeckelman. "One of the many benefits of a WIU education is that our students become informed and engaged citizens, and these results are one indication of that engagement."

Nationwide, the voting rates at college campuses participating in the study doubled, on average, between the 2014-18 midterm elections. Nationally, higher education institutions averaged a 19.7 percent voting rate in 2014 and a 39.1 percent rate in 2018.

The study breaks down election-related statistics in a variety of ways, including education level and class year, gender, race/ethnicity and field of study.

For more information about the WIU Department of Political Science, visit

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