Piedmont Virginia Community College has been named among America’s best colleges for encouraging students to vote in a report released by Washington Monthly in its September-October issue.
Washington Monthly’s 2019 College Rankings report evaluates American two- and four-year colleges on their contributions to social mobility, research, and public service. For the second year in a row, Washington Monthly included a special supplement to its report on how well colleges encourage their students to vote. Piedmont Virginia Community College was one of only four Virginia colleges and universities and five community colleges nationally to make the top 80 list for 2019.
To be considered, institutions were ranked on a five-point scale, which measured to what degree schools take part in the National Study of Learning, Voting and Engagement (NSLVE), as well as schools' participation in the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge, which helps schools craft plans to bolster civic engagement. PVCC was recognized for its voter registration initiatives and the “PVCC Votes” get out the vote initiative.
“I am so pleased that PVCC has been recognized among the list of 80 colleges that excel at getting their students to vote”, said PVCC President Frank Friedman. “At PVCC we view higher education as not just a private good leading to a high paying job but as a public good leading to more successful communities. Getting our students to be civically engaged is part of our mission and a priority.”
Recent civic activities at PVCC have included nonpartisan voter registration drives, a Congressional debate and multiple voting awareness events. PVCC has previously received national recognition from the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge and designation as a Voter Friendly Campus for its civic engagement efforts to increase voter engagement and registration among students.
Earlier this fall PVCC announced a new Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) focused on Civic Engagement entitled Civic Sense. The creation, implementation, and assessment of a quality enhancement plan is part of PVCC’s accreditation process. The QEP itself is a carefully designed and focused course of action that addresses a topic or issue related to student learning. Over the next 5 years, PVCC’s QEP Civic Sense will focus on engaging students in the civic life of their communities. Through Civic Sense, PVCC seeks to build student leaders who have a strong commitment to democracy and diversity, and who engage in the civic life of their communities through collaborative, creative, and critical problem-solving.
PVCC’s Civic Engagement Week features a variety of activities focused on voter registration and voting rights. Scheduled for Sept. 16-24, PVCC will host a series of election-related and educational activities, coinciding with Constitution Day and National Voter Registration Day. Each day during the week a different student club will register voters and provide election information to faculty, staff, and students.
For more information about PVCC’s civic engagement, voter registration and voter education initiatives visit www.pvcc.edu/civic-sense. To view the complete list of Washington Monthly’s America’s Best Colleges for Student Voting visit https://washingtonmonthly.com/magazine/september-october-2019/americas-best-colleges-for-student-voting-2019/.