UK Democrats get involved

By Neal Querio

[email protected]

With this year’s upcoming election, fewer and fewer students are registering to vote and deciding which candidate will receive their vote in November.

Romney and Obama’s campaigns are a popular topic amongst the media and have received incredible news coverage however, many young adults of voting age are completely uninformed on what policies each candidate is looking to change and how this elections results will affect their futures.

On UK’s campus there is a strong democratic presence gathering known as the UKDems or College Democrats.

Their philosophy is to educate, assist and influence change in all levels of politics from a local to national level.

They work to expand political knowledge to the college generation about the importance of voting and how the issues that the presidential candidates are addressing now will affect the futures of almost all UK students.

Members of the group are heavily involved in the campaigns of Congressmen Ben Chandler and State Rep. Susan Westrom as well as working closely with the Fayette County Democratic Party and other college chapters such as Transylvania University.

Students get a first hand look at the political process and once election season is over members will get a chance to give back to the Lexington community through different outreach programs such as Ronald McDonald House and Seedleaf.

The group even had an influence in the recent Rock The Vote Campaigns that had been covering UK’s campus weeks ago.

President Shea Henning talked a little about the group and their goals for this year as she stated, “I would like for us to get more presence on campus and stay heavily involved in the campaigns.”

Henning has been with the College Democrats group since she was a sophomore working her way up to treasurer then finally the position of president.

Henning also stressed the importance of getting more college age people registered and willing to vote.

“The youth vote, if we actually tapped into it, we would have a wonderful voice. Our numbers rival those of the baby boomers but unfortunately the youth doesn’t like to vote.”

The College Democrats are working to change this negative outlook through their efforts.

Interested students can attend meetings on Tuesdays at 6 p.m. in the Student Center room 359 up until November or join the Facebook group “University of Kentucky College Democrats.” There is also a Twitter page that is frequently updated throughout the semester.

According to their official page there are 25 official members however the Facebook group has more than 100 members. Membership dues are $10 and are needed by the third meeting a student attends.

“We are cautiously optimistic,” Henning said when asked about the upcoming election. “Historically speaking whoever’s leading two weeks after the convention usually wins the election … knock on wood.”