Tour comes to UF next week to engage students in politics
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A tour aimed at engaging young voters during this election season will arrive at the University of Florida Monday to hold a rally where students can share their opinions on such topics as jobs, education, health care, immigration and voter participation.
Politic365 College Convention Bus Tour will visit 11 colleges or universities in Florida and North Carolina and is sponsored by Politic365, an online news source on multicultural politics. Also sponsoring the bipartisan event are Our Time, a nonprofit that promotes economic opportunities for people under 30, and ColorofChange.org, a group that strives to make government more responsive to the concerns of the changing demographics of our country to bring positive political and social change for everyone.
The UF leg of the tour, to be held 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Rion Ballroom of the Reitz Student Union, will be an open forum with a panel of guests brought by Politic365.
The event coincides with next week’s Republican National Convention in Tampa.
“I hope that the event will allow students to share their opinions on issues that specifically pertain to them such as federal student aid, and spark an interest in politics and current events that I believe our generation lacks,” said Billy Vranish, a UF senior and director of external affairs for Student Government. “People underestimate the impact that young people, especially college students, can have, and that is something that we hope to change by having events like these.”
This year, 18- to 29-year-olds represent 24 percent of the electorate eligible to vote.
The College Republicans, the College Democrats, staff from the Bob Graham Center for Public Service, and a coalition of civic-centered student groups have planned to table at the event. The student government agency Chomp the Vote will be registering students to vote in Alachua County.
Confirmed speakers include Politic365 correspondents Jeff Johnson, Lenny McAllister, Adriana Maestas, and Politic365 Editor-in-Chief Kristal High. Jason Johnson, a professor of political science and communication at Hiram College, will also participate in the open forum with a panel.
In Florida, the tour stops at the University of Central Florida, Florida A&M University College of Law, Florida International University, the University of North Florida and the University of South Florida. During the Republican Convention, Vranish will travel to Tampa to join students from other Florida colleges to participate in a policy discussion also held by Politic365.