Newcomer Nonprofit Nicole

Hi, I’m Nicole! I work at a nonprofit organization that serves student voters, but I’m new to the national student voting space. There’s so much happening in the space and I want to find the best connections to meet my organization’s goals.


“I really want to understand how to best collaborate with partners in this space and get plugged into the resources that can help me meet my goals, but I find it difficult to navigate relationships with other nonprofit organizations and campus partners.”

You might relate to me if you were recently hired at an existing SLSV Coalition nonprofit partner organization, if your organization recently expanded its scope to include student voting, or if your organization was recently onboarded to the Coalition.

Familiarize yourself with the SLSV Checklist!

The SLSV Checklist is a four-step process for institutionalizing student voting engagement on college campuses. We start with a simple premise grounded in trust, not transaction: local leaders who know their campus best, who are committed to their specific place, and who have access to local social networks are best positioned and most culturally equipped to drive dramatic and sustainable increases in voter participation, learning, and growth over time. We hope that every SLSV Partner adopts this framework into their approach to student voting engagement. 

Learn about what’s already happening (or not happening yet) on campuses within your network!

Many campuses who do student voter engagement work publish a democratic engagement action plan. They also may be enrolled in the National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement (NSLVE) which outlines their student registration and voting rates.

You can also check the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge’s website to see if a campus is part of the Challenge and if it has a public campus action plan and/or public NSLVE report. Those user-friendly pages show whether their institution’s President has committed to full student voter participation. 

If you are an SLSV Coalition partner, check out the SLSV Master Sheet to see a list of most campuses across the country, tracked by location, campus type, partnerships, NSLVE reports, and action plans. This is helpful to see how engaged campuses are.

Look at data to gain a deeper understanding of the national student voting landscape!

Learn about the #StudentVote movement directly from the leaders who built it, by checking out the #StudentVote Story of Success

The Student Vote Research Network is a collaborative effort to fund and publish the latest research in nonpartisan civic learning, political engagement, and voter participation among college students. Check out their newsletter for recent findings and check out their best practices for college student voter participation. 

IDHE’s Democracy Counts Reports contains findings from the National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement, a landmark study of U.S. college and university student voting.

ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge’s 2020 Action Plan Report highlights the 2020 campus democratic engagement action planning process and shares key findings, suggestions, and data.

Check out the latest data from CIRCLE at Tufts, who publishes state-based youth voting reports.  

Familiarize yourself with the Ask Every Student Toolkit!

Familiarize yourself with the Ask Every Student Toolkit to support campuses implement innovative strategies and resources in the classroom, across student life, with institutional partnerships, and by supporting student leaders.

Interested in getting trained on how to use these resources? Reach out to our Campus Engagement & Support Coordinator Sithara Menon sithara@slsvcoalition.org to set up a time to chat!

Learn more about how to better support Black student voters, especially at HBCU campuses!

The Campus Vote Project and NAACP’s Legacy Initiative aims to identify and address barriers to student voting on HBCU campuses, and Black students voting on predominantly white campuses, through various methods of research and the creation of new and innovative resources. Read their insights brief on four major themes and proposed solutions for those who engage and support HBCU students as they exercise their right to vote.

Read Intentional Voter Engagement Messaging while Addressing Systemic Racism, which provides key insights from an SLSV Coalition-wide roundtable discussion in June 2020. 

Educate yourself on the voting laws and rules in your state!

Partner with your local election officials! Nobody knows your local voting laws and rules better and they are an essential partnership for doing this work! Check out the Election Official and Campus Engagement Report and Toolkit, for information, best practices, and tools to engage in successful outreach and collaboration with local election officials.

Check out the Campus Vote Project’s State Student Voting Guides. You can keep this handy to learn more about the voting laws in your state, but they are also helpful if you need to reference another state for your fellow students who come from out-of-state. 

Voter ID laws can be confusing. Every state has different rules, and the rules can differ depending on voting method. For college students, things can get even more complicated. Clear, accurate, and easily available voter ID messaging is essential to ensuring students have what they need to cast their ballots. Check out our resource with VoteRiders to find a student voter ID landing page, voter ID info cards, and a communications toolkit! 

Participate in Civic Holidays!

Beside Election Day, these holidays are some of the most visible and exciting opportunities to celebrate voting on campus.  The holidays we are talking about are:

  • National Voter Registration Day
  • National Voter Education Week
  • Vote Early Day
  • Election Hero Day


You can learn more about these holidays by checking out the CivicHolidays.org website. Also, we highly recommend checking out Campus Takeover: an initiative that focuses on supporting campuses celebrating Civic Holidays! Joining Campus Takeover gives you access to specific toolkits, sample materials, and funding to support your on-campus event! 

Want to dive deeper on resources? Go to the SLSV Coalition Resource Library and use filters to find what you’re looking for. 

You don’t need to do this alone. Check out some of these SLSV Partners who can help you!

Partners to support your work!

The SLSV Coalition Partner Directory is the best place to navigate the hundreds of partners in this space. You can browse through all partners or sort by a variety of tags to narrow your focus. Check out some of these SLSV Partners who can help you!

Thanks, but I have more questions!

Join the SLSV Coalition’s listserv! We are always pushing out funding opportunities from the network when they become available. Examples of funding opportunities we have offered or highlighted in the past were one-time grants, Ask Every Student implementation grants, and rapid response grants. Join the Coalition!

Yes! We have starter packs for many types of stakeholders, just like this one! View them all here. You can also direct them to the main page of Navigating the Student Voting Space that includes the partner directory, resource library, stakeholder starter packs and explainer graphics.

Have a question that isn’t answered here?  Feel free to email our Associate Director of Partnerships, Bianca Rosales at bianca@slsvcoalition.org and we are happy to assist!