Voter Outreach Working Group
(Rock the Vote concert, voter registration, Get Out the Vote)
Monday, July 19th at 3:30pm in Room 12 of Morrill Hall
Voter Education Working Group
(Candidate survey, elected official speaker series)
Monday, July 19th at 4:30pm in Room 12 of Morrill Hall
Communications Working Group
(contacting students about SPAC, advertising Rock the Vote concert)
Tuesday, July 20th at 4:00pm in Room 301 of Coffmann Union
Voter Registration Training with the Minnesota Participation Project
Wednesday, July 21st at 7p.m. Room 319 in Coffman Union
1) What is SPAC?
SPAC is joint effort of the University of Minnesota Student Association (MSA) (undergraduate student government) and the University of Minnesota Graduate and Professional Student Assembly (GAPSA) (graduate student government) to increase student participation in knowledge of voting and public affairs.
2) Who funds SPAC?
Funding for SPACís activities is shared by MSA and GAPSA. Both the President of MSA and the President of GAPSA have expressed total support for SPACís activities this fall.
3) What are SPACís goals?
SPAC has three main goals each with individual component parts:
1) Registering students to vote and Getting them out to vote (GOTV)
a. Registering students to vote in Coffman Union, the Minnesota state fair, the Washington Avenue bridge and individual classrooms throughout the University if possible.
b. Hosting a Rock the Vote concert in which students register to vote as they pick-up tickets and/or attend the event.
c. Contacting students on and around election day reminding them to vote and informing them of where they can vote.
2) Educating students about the importance of voting and the positions of candidates
a. Preparing a survey of Minnesota House candidates in consultation with relevant student groups.
b. Hosting a speaker series featuring prominent elected officials explaining why voting matters. (This can also be used to encourage students to vote.)
c. Hosting a debate between surrogates of the Bush and Kerry campaigns.
3) Advocating on behalf of students at the capitol
a. Organizing lobby days for the undergraduate students, graduate students, and colleges within the University.
b. Tracking legislation that effects students.
c. Testifying at committee hearings on behalf of students.
4) What needs to get done to make sure SPAC is successful?
a. Agree upon the goals of SPAC and the best methods to achieve them.
b. Clearly define each SPAC memberís role within the group.
c. Outline a plan to heighten SPACís visibility and increase volunteer recruitment.
d. Develop a budget for SPACís activities and obtain approval by MSA and GAPSA.
e. Finalize a calendar of tasks and events that are to be completed throughout the year.
5) Will SPAC have any paid staff?
No. SPAC is a volunteer driven organization. That being said, GAPSA will be hiring a public affairs assistant who will be working with SPAC on a number of projects.
6) Who should I contact about getting involved with SPAC or if I have any SPAC-related questions?
Please contact Amy Jo Pierce (Vice President of MSA) and Dan Miller (Vice President of Public Affairs for GAPSA) if you have any interest in or questions for SPAC.
Amy Jo Pierce
- Raise U of M studentsí participation in the 2004 Presidential Elections, by increasing their awareness on the importance of exercising the right to vote (to be connected with voter registration efforts).
- Provide U of M students with sufficient knowledge to make an informed electoral decision in both Presidential and State elections next November (that is, proliferation of information on candidatesí profiles and their positions on the issues especially important to students).
Timeline for Survey project:
- Student groups contacted to find out who wants to participate and what they what issues they would like addressed in a survey. Then decide in a meeting time at the end of July what questions we want to include, consult Larry Jacobs for feedback and criticism of the survey format and then send the survey to participating groups giving them some time to give final feedback.
- SPAC will have training by the Minnesota Participation Project on voter registration, voter education and how to conduct a survey (July 21st 7-9pm in Room 319).
August-start: Contact campaign managers for House and tell them about
survey, send by e-mail and/or letter.
Mid-August: Get the framework ready for the website so answers just need to
be entered, update website as survey responses come in.
September: Follow up with House candidates who haven't responded.
First week of October: Have the majority of candidatesí survey responses on website and plan for story for MN Daily, Star Tribune, Pioneer Press Ė the more press coverage the better.
- Engage UM students in how politics affect their lives and educationsóand how they can impact electoral politicsóby organizing proxy candidate debates on campus. To be focused on candidatesí positions on issues especially important to students.
Timeline for Survey project:
- Identify and invite students interested in organizing debate (SPAC, HHH, PoliSci, etc.)
- Identify appropriate representatives from each statewide party organization
- Contact representatives to invite to participate in proxy debate
- Contact representatives from the student (i.e., University) affiliates of each party to also play role in debate
- Identify and invite moderator (Larry Jacobs?)
- Develop content for debateócoordinate with candidate survey team. Work in conjunction with moderator on this (at least vet content by moderator)
- Reserve location
- Make AV arrangements (recording, microphones, video, audio, etc.)
- Determine how publicity will be arranged
September: Contact local media (Strib, PP, Daily, MPR, TV) to alert them to this eventóencourage them to run story ahead of time, in addition to showing up at event. Coordinate with Larry Jacobs on this.
First week of October: Aim to hold debate this week (not midterms, still allows students to register at debates, allows time to build-up/publicize after students return to campus).
- Host music concert in partnership with Rock the Vote.
- Draw attendance of at least 8,000 students
- Register 4,000 students to vote
- Get 2,000 students to pledge to vote for the U
-Meet with Meghan Vandeberg and Margaret Cahill of SAO and make list of necessary steps to planning a successful concert
-Obtain list of bands to play at the concert from Rock the Vote
-Recruit volunteers to help with concert preparations
-Finalize concert site
-Sign contract for the concert with Rock the Vote
-Obtain the necessary permits for the concert from the University, city of Minneapolis, etc.
-Contact local businesses and organizations about sponsoring booths, giveaways, and the concert itself
-Begin preparing advertising/promotion plan
-Outline plans for getting students to register to vote before or at the concert
-Set up tables to distribute tickets and register students to vote
-Complete advertising/promotion plan
-Initiate advertising and marketing for the concert
-Make final preparations for the concert
-Concert is held
- Ensure that 75% (approximately 30,000) of eligible UMTC students are registered to vote.
Timeline for Voter Registration project:
- Weekly tabling at UM Orientation Informational Fairsóthis tabling is both to register incoming students to vote and to recruit volunteers to help register others (June-August)
- Tabling at LRT Grand Opening (June)
- Work with SPAC to recruit students to table around campus (July, August)
- Work with SPAC to reserve regular space and tables inside Coffman (July, August)
- Organize events for State Fair booth (July, August)
- Recruit volunteers to staff Vote for U booth at State Fair
- Identify professors of large, required courses and approach for permission to speak briefly with classes about registering to vote
- SPAC will have training by the Minnesota Participation Project on voter registration, voter education and how to conduct a survey (July 21).
August 26-September 6: State Fair. Vote for the U tabling throughout Fair.
September 7: First day of Fall Semester.
September 1-October 12:
- Voter registration tabling throughout campus (Washington Ave. bridge, Coffman, Northrop Mall
- Attend large classes to give class raps
- Organize events with Residence Hall groups
- Attend large events on campus to register students
- Continue to recruit and train volunteers
October 11: MTVís Rock the Vote concert at UM. Presents a tremendous opportunity to register a large number of students all assembled in one place.
October 12: Deadline to pre-register to vote.
November 2: Election Day. Voters may register on same day to vote in elections.