Voter registration ends Tuesday

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Photo of 1965 voter registration march in Alabama.

Selma to Montgomery voting rights march in 1965.

KALAMAZOO—Your right to vote is precious. Your opportunity to register to vote in this year's presidential election or to change the address at which you are registered to vote ends Tuesday, Oct. 9.

Western Michigan University encourages all WMU students, faculty and staff—and the general public—to exercise your right to vote and participate in this year's election. You cannot do that if you are not registered to vote.

Your right to vote is precious

In a message to the campus community, Dr. Diane Anderson, vice president for student affairs, wrote, "Fifty years ago, only about one-third of WMU students were eligible to vote, and 100 years ago, almost none were."

"Your right to vote is precious," said Anderson. "Generations of Americans have labored long, and some have died, to secure the voting rights we enjoy today. I join President Dunn and other leaders of the University, and the Western Student Association and Graduate Student Advisory Committee in urging you to exercise your right and responsibility as a citizen."

  • After a century of struggle, organizing and marching, women earned the right to vote with the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, in 1920.
  • African-Americans and other minorities were systematically excluded from voting in large parts of the country until passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
  • Citizens under age 21 were not eligible to vote until 1971, with the ratification of the 26th Amendment to the Constitution, lowering the voting age to 18.

Go to wmich.edu/vote for complete information on how to register or change the address at which you're registered by the Tuesday, Oct. 9 dealine.