State to hold voter ID event for students Sept. 26 in HUB

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Pennsylvania officials will hold a news conference Sept. 26 at Penn State to remind young voters about the importance of casting their ballots and to explain Pennsylvania's new voter identification law, which goes into effect with November’s election. A forum titled “Why Vote?” is scheduled for later that evening in the HUB-Robeson Cultural Center.

Carol Aichele, secretary of the Commonwealth Department of State, is scheduled to talk about the law at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday on the first floor of the HUB, just outside the id+ office on the University Park campus. She also plans to urge Pennsylvania's youngest voters to take advantage of their opportunity to vote in the upcoming presidential election.

As the Commonwealth’s chief election official, Aichele also will address Penn State's quick response to changing its student identification card (id+) by adding expiration dates that would ensure all Penn State students are able to vote.

Pennsylvania’s voter ID law now requires voters to show an acceptable photo ID to vote at the polls. Before May of this year, Penn State student ID cards did not have an expiration date, a requirement for a legitimate form of ID under the law. Beginning with summer orientation, all new student ID cards issued included a printed expiration date that is five years from the date of issue. During the current fall semester, students who have not yet been issued an ID card with an expiration date, and possess no other acceptable form of ID that can be used for voting, can obtain an expiration sticker that can be affixed to their existing Penn State id+ Card, making it valid for voting. There is no charge for the stickers, which are being issued at Penn State campuses and are available for pickup until Election Day on Nov. 6. For more information on the state law, visit www.votespa.com. For a list of pickup locations and office hours, visit www.idcard.psu.edu/IDCard/TheCard/OfficeLocations.cfm.

From 8 to 9 p.m. in Heritage Hall of the HUB, a forum focused on the topic of “Why Vote?” with a panel of speakers will be held. The event is hosted by PSU Votes, a nonpartisan town-gown initiative aimed at educating students about important civic issues.

Three speakers will headline this first forum:

-- Jay Paterno will present about “Elections Matter”;
-- Coquese Washington will discuss “Why It’s Important to Vote”; and
-- John Gastil, a professor of communication arts and sciences, will present “Do we really hate each other, or does it just look like it? Incivility, polarization, and deliberation in American politics."

Penn State Public Broadcasting will present live broadcasts of this first PSU Votes forum at wpsu.org/live online. WPSU will present an encore presentation of “Why Vote?” at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 7, on WPSU-FM during the show “The Idea Hour.”

For more information on additional PSU Votes forums, visit http://live.psu.edu/story/61372 online or http://votes.psu.edu online.

Last Updated September 25, 2012