September 15, 2016

CONTACT: Kevin Hall
Communications Director

MEDIA RELEASE: Pate announces Iowa College Voter Engagement Drive; Launches to help remind Iowans to participate in elections

DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate announces a partnership with 38 colleges and universities across the state for the inaugural Iowa College Voter Engagement Drive. Additionally the Secretary of State’s Office launched a new voter engagement tool, entitled My Iowa Vote, to remind and encourage college students and all Iowans to register and participate in the November general election.

“There are more than 300,000 college students in Iowa and I hope all of them participate in the November election,” Secretary Pate said. “Becoming involved in the electoral process now will hopefully spur them to remain engaged citizens in their communities after graduation. Hopefully, they remain in the state of Iowa to pursue their careers, as well.

Pate made the remarks during a news conference at Drake University, one of the many schools that is heavily involved in the College Voter Engagement Drive. Drake University is also collaborating with the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office on the My Iowa Vote initiative.

“I encourage all Iowans to visit There, they can register to vote, update their voter registration information, locate their polling place, and opt-in to receive a series of text or email reminders for when to vote,” Pate said. “It’s a phenomenal tool that you can access online anytime. We are encouraging schools, universities, businesses, organizations and political parties to utilize My Iowa Vote.” is developed through the TurboVote technology offered by Democracy Works, a non-partisan organization dedicated to making voting simpler. provides tools that can be inserted into any website as an I-frame, sent as a link in an email, and inserted into any social media site, for free.

“The Iowa Secretary of State has done an extraordinary job reaching out to Iowa’s colleges and universities to encourage voter registration and participation, an initiative that welcomes new voters into the Iowa political community. Drake University is pleased and proud to join those efforts, and to continue our own institutional commitment to active and informed civic participation, respectful dialogue about the issues that define our collective future, and responsible citizenship,” said Dr. Rachel Paine Caufield from the Department of Political Science at Drake University.

"The Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics is pleased to work with the Iowa Secretary of State's Office to encourage increased participation by young citizens in the upcoming elections," said center director Dianne Bystrom. "I am also pleased that the Iowa Secretary of State has sponsored an opportunity for colleges and universities to participate in TurboVote, which has an excellent record of getting out the vote on Election Day."

More than 84 percent of eligible Iowans are registered to vote. Secretary of State Paul Pate’s goal is for all eligible Iowans to register and participate in elections. That includes college students and millennials.

"Iowa has a strong track record of voter engagement and we applaud these efforts to continue it with the next generation," said Emily Shields, Executive Director, Iowa Campus Compact. "Educating students for democratic participation is a critical mission of higher education and our member campuses are committed to supporting these efforts."

The 38 Iowa colleges and universities partnering with the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office for the Iowa College Voter Engagement Drive include:

Briar Cliff University
Buena Vista University
Central College
Clarke University
Clinton Community College
Cornell College
Des Moines Area Community College
Des Moines University
Dordt College
Drake University
Emmaus Bible College
Graceland University
Grand View University
Iowa Central Community College
Iowa Lakes Community College, Emmetsburg
Iowa Lakes Community College, Estherville
Iowa Lakes Community College, Spencer
Iowa State University
Iowa Valley Community Colleges
Iowa Western Community College
Kirkwood Community College
Mercy College of Health Sciences
Morningside College
Mt. Mercy University
North Iowa Area Community College
Northeast Iowa Community College
Northwest Iowa Community College
Northwestern College
Palmer Chiropractic
Simpson College
St. Ambrose University
University of Dubuque
University of Iowa
University of Northern Iowa
Upper Iowa University
Waldorf University
Wartburg College
Western Iowa Tech Community College