Student Voting Resources and Frequently Asked Questions

BestColleges has partnered with VoteAmerica to help students navigate the voter registration process.

February 5, 2020 · Updated on May 2, 2022

Student Voting Resources and Frequently Asked Questions

Since millennials and Generation Z now represent the largest share of eligible voters in the U.S., student voters have the power to cast deciding votes in the 2022 midterm elections.

At the same time, college students must overcome various challenges to voting, including recent efforts to suppress voter rights across the country. That is why BestColleges is proud to partner with VoteAmerica to provide information and tools to help drive student voter turnout in 2022.

VoteAmerica Voter Registration Tools

Register to Vote
Double Check Your Voter Registration Status
Get Your Absentee Ballot (Also Called Vote-By-Mail)
Where Is My Polling Place?
Local Election Office Directory

Frequently Asked Questions About Voting in College

true How do I know if I am registered to vote?

Students who are unsure whether or where they're registered to vote can check their voter registration status on the National Association of Secretaries of State website. There, you'll select the state you think you're registered in, then input your name and birthdate to check your status. You can also update your name and/or home address if needed.

If you have any questions about your voter registration status, reach out to your local election official.

true How do I vote if I'm studying abroad?

To vote from another country, you'll need to fill out a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) and mail it to your local election office in your state of residency. Once your FPCA has been processed, you'll receive a blank ballot (usually by email or fax) during election season. To cast your vote, simply fill out this ballot and mail it to your election office before Election Day.

Many resources are available to guide you through the process. Some voting offices also allow you to check the status of your absentee voter registration online.

true How do I get an absentee ballot?

States set specific rules about absentee, or vote-by-mail, ballots and who is allowed to use them. According to USA.gov, most states require registered voters to visit the office or website of their state/territorial election agency to request an absentee ballot. Note that some states, including Washington, Colorado, Oregon, and Hawaii, allow all elections to be conducted by mail-in voting.

Absentee ballots are typically delivered by mail or fax. Students should request absentee ballots early to ensure timely delivery, as election offices often get busy in the weeks leading up to Election Day.

true Does where I register to vote affect my tuition status and financial aid?

In general, where you register to vote should not affect your in-state or out-of-state tuition status.

Your residency status is typically determined by many factors, including your voter registration, motor vehicle registration, driver's license, and state income tax returns. Where your parents or guardians live can also determine your tuition status if they claim you as a dependent.

There's a slight chance that where you're registered to vote could affect your eligibility for certain scholarships and grants if they come from organizations or agencies based in your home state. Your school's financial aid office can provide more information on your situation.

In most cases, if your in-state or out-of-state status does not change, your scholarships should not change either.

true How long must you live in a state to be able to register to vote there?

Rules about length of residency are set by individual states. For example, according to Vote.org, 15 states, as well as Washington, D.C., require voters to have lived in their voting precincts for at least 30 days before the upcoming election.

If an election will take place soon after you move to a new state, you may want to stay registered in your home state.

Student Voter Resources for Getting Involved

Don't let voter suppression stop you from getting involved in the election this year. There are many ways students can volunteer their time, advocate for important issues, and make a difference in 2022.

This website offers tools for civically engaged students to help them organize political events and increase political awareness on campus.

This organization helps college students gain political knowledge and access opportunities for activism by providing resources like an activism toolkit and an internship board.

This organization engages and trains young people — primarily those ages 18-35 — to build movements and become leaders on the issues impacting millennials and Generation Z.

This organization helps fund students' political groups, activism, and social justice projects. It also provides a 10-step guidebook for mobilizers.

This national nonprofit organization encourages young people to become activists for social justice through artistic and educational forums.

This organization selects young adults and college students to participate in a leadership development program for promoting political causes and projects focused on social justice.

Voting Resources for Staying Informed

There are many issues directly impacting students in the 2022 midterm elections. Fortunately, there are many resources that can help you make informed voting decisions.

This informational guide breaks down the issues according to the official Democratic and Republican party platforms.

This informational guide lays out the issues that are vital for Black and African American colleges students.

This informational guide breaks down the most important issues for Hispanic and Latino/a Students.

This informational guide lays out all the issues that matter for Asian American and Pacific Islander students in 2022.

This informational guide explains the most important issues affecting LGBTQ+ students in 2022.

This site aggregates content from multiple sources nationwide to deliver localized, nonpartisan information about candidates and referendums that will appear on the ballot.


DISCLAIMER: The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only. Readers of this website should contact an attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal matter.