Over 800 Kansas State University students have registered to vote in a two-week-long voter registration and awareness program, thanks to a K-State student organization. The Kappa Tau chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity held its annual “A Voteless People is a Hopeless People” event during the first two weeks of September, registering a total of 804 new voters.
Using a YouTube video, “A Voteless People Is a Hopeless People,” as their main marketing piece, Alpha Phi Alpha’s goal was to register more K-State students to vote and to encourage voter awareness across campus and the community.
“We encourage everyone to be politically responsible,” says Chikezie Ehie, director of educational activities and a member of Alpha Phi Alpha for two years. “If we forfeit our right to vote, that fundamental right that so many fought for, we essentially forfeit the right to complain for the next four years.”
Nationally, chapters of Alpha Phi Alpha place a strong emphasis on using the right to vote and encouraging registration and political participation. The voter awareness program encourages students to register to vote, as well to be informed about politics and the upcoming election.
The fraternity visited Junction City High School this past February to hold a one-day registration drive. In just one day, 112 students were registered to vote.
Ehie says voting and paying attention to politics is important for every college student: “This election could impact how much financial aid is available and the rate at which we students will pay it back. It affects all of us.”
According to the fraternity’s website, the voter awareness program was created in the 1930s. This was a time when many African-Americans were discouraged from voting because of poll taxes, threats of reprisal, and lack of education about the voting process.
Alpha Phi Alpha is the first intercollegiate Greek-letter fraternity established for African-Americans. It was founded at Cornell University in 1906 and aims to develop leadership, academic excellence, and service for the community.
“As members of our fraternity,” says Ehie, “We love to serve our community, whether that be the K-State community or Manhattan. We are happy to help.”
More information about “A Voteless People Is a Hopeless People” and Alpha Phi Alpha can be found by visiting kstatealphas.com or alpha-phi-alpha.com.
The Journal of Public Deliberation was created as a scholarly forum for deliberative democracy. The journal publishes information on research, opinions, projects, experiments, and experience of practitioners and academics.
Upcoming public forums and events provide an opportunity to contribute your voice on issues of youth retention, health care, and economic security. Join us!
Yes, I want to help strengthen democracy.
To contribute financially to the work of ICDD, you can send your tax deductible gift to the KSU Foundation.
Donate now and help us continue this important work.