This story was written by Matthew Tomlin, The Daily Vidette
Illinois State University students still have ample time to register to vote through the "Trust Me, I'm a Voter" campaign before the October 7 registration deadline.
This week, the group will be set up on the Milner Library plaza every day from 12-2 p.m., registering anyone who shows up with two forms of identification, one of which must display the individual's current address.
"The one way that we can guarantee that our voice is heard and counted is to get out there and vote on Election Day," Andrew Matthews, an advisor in the school of communication and a "Trust Me" coordinator, said.
"Our goal is to register at least 1,000 people," Jennifer McDade, a lecturer in the school of communication and a coordinator for the "Trust Me" campaign, said. "At this point we're about a third of the way there, but we'd love to exceed that goal."
The campaign took charge in helping arrange a debate for the three congressional candidates of the eleventh district on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in the Brown Ballroom of the Bone Student Center.
"In the next few days, we're going to be out on campus with a video camera...getting, sort of, YouTube video submissions of questions from students," Matthews said. "The debate is free of charge and open to the public."
The following day, Oct. 3, "Trust Me" will be in the Brown Ballroom again, at 6 p.m., co-hosting 'Rock the Vote' with the University Program Board.
"Rachel and Veronica from 'The Real World' cast will be on-campus," McDade said. "We will have registration set up at all events."
On Oct. 10, "Trust Me" has organized for director David Burnstein to come to campus as part of his 50-state tour, premiering his documentary "18 in '08" at 11 a.m. in the Old Main room of the Bone Student Center.
McDade explained that ISU is only "one of two campuses in Illinois" that Burnstein has scheduled on his tour. The film is aimed toward young people who will cast their first-ever votes in the 2008 election.
McDade says the campaign currently has events scheduled through Nov. 9, and they intend on continuing the campaign after the election.
"The key to this campaign is that it integrates the learning that goes on on-campus with opportunities for students," she said. "In the spring you'll see a continuation of this campaign with students getting involved in meaningful service opportunities."
Matthews echoed McDade's emphasis on the education aspect of the campaign, saying, "As much as we are trying to get students educated overall, I think one of the most important aspects is not just to get them to vote, but to educate them on the issues and help them realize where they stand on those issues."