Young Democrats Revamp in Time for Primaries
BY BAILEY MITCHELL
From emails to social media friend requests, students of Westminster can’t miss the newly revived club on campus, Young Democrats. While in past semesters the club has been inactive, the organization has committed to having a strong social media presence and spreading the word about political news, during the primaries and beyond. The club hopes to foster political awareness through its campus activities and build a community of politically knowledgeable students.
“Slowly but surely, we could have a really strong presence on campus,” said first-year student and Young Democrats Vice President Olivia Wilson, who has played a large role in revamping the organization.
The group’s main goal is to get students involved in politics, and everyone, regardless of political affiliation, is encouraged to attend.
“A lot of times [politics] is seen as an adult issue, but now is such a great time to get involved,” Wilson said. “Youth have such a huge say in who becomes the next president.”
Through events like debate watch parties, presentations on different candidates’ views, and continually encouraging students to vote, Young Democrats hope to have a campus full of knowledgeable voters. They also want to create a culture where students understand how the political system affects their lives.
“It is so important to understand what is going on around you,” Wilson said. “You can see the effects of politics on campus.”
Wilson said she hopes that Young Democrats can influence students to get involved in politics, especially within the next couple months, as the election season heats up.
To increase the group’s membership, Wilson is using social media.
“I can’t imagine recruiting members without it,” she said. “It’s a great way to connect with the campus because all students have some sort of social media account.”
The ability to create events on Facebook allows people to RSVP and get reminders about the club’s activities. Wilson said this is an ideal way to communicate with students because social media allows the club to share information quickly and easily, and because students are always on their phones.
The attention the club is bringing to itself has happened at just the right time. With primaries in full swing, Wilson said that the club always has plenty to talk about.
After the primaries end, the club plans on gaining more momentum. Wilson foresees more campaigning locally and in the state within the next year because there will be one single candidate for members of Young Democrats to back. The organization has even thought about its long-term status: After the election is over, Young Democrats plans to continue to strive to have a more politically aware campus population.