BGSU Votes is a nonpartisan, student-led initiative focused on voter and political engagement to increase the knowledge and develop the skills of students to engage in democracy, politics, policymaking, and social action. BGSU Votes is a campus resource for election information, presentations, and political engagement collaborations. Contact us with any questions or requests.
Backgrounds created by students in ARTD 4030 System-Based Graphic Design
Election 2020 Dates
Registration Deadline - Oct. 5
Early Voting - Oct. 6 - Nov. 2
Election Day - Nov. 3
View the recording from the October 4th Candidate Forum featuring candidates running to represent Northwest Ohio.
In Ohio you are required to register to vote at least 30 days before an election. Other states have different registration requirements and deadlines. Students may choose to register to vote in their college/university community or back in their hometown. Each time you move to a new address you must update your voter registration address.
Below we have curated some helpful nonpartisan tools and links that will help you get more informed about candidates, issues, and elections so you and be prepared to vote.
Sign up for the BGSU Votes Newsletter
Sign up for monthly updates about elections, civic and political opportunities, public service careers, and other ways to be involved. If you have opportunities you'd like to promote please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Receive Text Updates about Upcoming Elections
Sign up for occasional text message reminders about upcoming elections and other voting information from BGSU Votes and the Andrew Goodman Foundation. Message and data rates may apply.
Text BGSUVotes to 56525
In many states, including Ohio, there are multiple methods you can utilize to vote. You can
- vote early in person,
- vote early by absentee ballot, or
- vote on Election Day.
Each has a process that requires some planning on your part and below we have curated some helpful tools to make your voting experience great.
How do I vote by mail?
The Campus Election Engagement Project highlights the simple steps for voting by mail.
Voting by Mail: Myth vs. Fact.
Do you have concerns voting by mail this fall? Check out this Campus Election Engagement Project video debunking common myths surrounding the process.
COVID 19 and Voting
Students have the option to vote at their home address or school address. Many factors go into deciding which location to register and exercise your vote such as where you plan to be on election day, if you prefer to vote early, vote by mail, or vote on Election Day, and which community issues and candidates you wish to support . This year student voters will also need to take into consideration the best place to register that will be most flexible for them should a pandemic disruption or displacement occur. Register to vote.
If you prefer to vote in person or want to wait to know more about pandemic conditions, early voting is a great option. It is a great way to avoid long lines and crowds of people. In Ohio you can begin early voting October 6 - November 2. For hours of early voting visit your local board of election website, which you can find on the Ohio Secretary of State website. If you are voting in Bowling Green visit the Wood County Board of Elections or the Erie County Board of Elections for early voting dates and hours.
Frequently Asked Questions
An absentee ballot allows you to vote by mail. If you are a registered voter, your local board of elections will send out an absentee ballot application and corresponding deadline to submit. They will then send you your ballot by mail and you complete it and send it back to your local board of elections.
If you did not get an absentee ballot by mail, you can request one online at longdistancevoting.org. Remember, you must be registered to request an absentee ballot.
Students who live on campus and are registered to vote at their on campus address can access a Voter Identification Letter, which is accessible through your MyBGSU portal. See instructions for how to access this letter.
Students registered to vote at an off campus address should consult the voter identification requirements at the Ohio Secretary of State website.
If you are voting early in person, you will need your Ohio Driver's License or State ID number or the last 4-digits of your Social Security Number.
Early voting is a convenient option to cast your ballot before election day. Many voters are out of town on election day, cannot make it to the hours of voting on election day because of work, or have other extenuating circumstances.
Each county handles early voting differently. Before the election, determine the early voting location and times in the county in which you are registered to vote. For those of you registered in Bowling Green, the early voting location is a short walk from campus at the Wood County Courthouse (located in the building with the tall clock tower near downtown Bowling Green, or 1 Court House Sq., Bowling Green, OH).
Yes, you will have to register using your address on-campus or off-campus in Bowling Green.
Many students decide to register to vote in the town they attend college/university. As a student you have the right to register and vote in the place that you consider to be truly "home". We recommend that you speak to your friends and family to help you make the decision about where you would like to vote.
Volunteer with BGSU Votes
Want to volunteer with BGSU Votes? We are always in need of volunteers to help register voters, inform students of upcoming elections, and work on special projects to foster a climate of political engagement on campus.
A Student Perspective
Learn more about BGSU Votes from Andrew Goodman Foundation Vote Everywhere Ambassador, Carlie Pritt.
Falcons Count! Its time to take the Census. If you are an on campus BGSU student you will be counted by the university. If you are an off-campus student you should receive a notice in the mail at your Bowling Green address between March 12-20, 2020. Out of town because of COVID-19? No worries you can respond online, by phone, or by paper form at: https://2020census.gov/en/ways-to-respond.html. Students should complete the census based on where they live the majority of the year. For most BGSU students this is in Bowling Green. All students, including international students, should complete the census. Help Bowling Green have their highest completion rate in history!
Visit the BGSU Census 2020 webpage for updates and information for on campus students and off campus students.
BGSU Voter Engagement Data, Reports, and Resources
BGSU is a part of the National Study of Learning, Voting and Engagement. Each even election year a report of student voter registration and participation is compiled to better understand student voter engagement at BGSU. To view the reports please visit our Resources page, which also features other helpful information and resources.
BGSU Votes is a partnering campus with the Andrew Goodman Foundation Vote Everywhere Program, All In Campus Democracy Challenge, Campus Election Engagement Project, and Campus Vote Project Voter Friendly Campus Initiative.