Manhattan College is being recognized for the work that members of the community are doing to kickstart voter engagement on campus.
Washington Monthly has included Manhattan College on its annual list of colleges that do the most to turn students into active citizens.
Student voting on the Manhattan College campus increased significantly in last year’s election, rising to 59.6% in 2020 from a rate of 41.3% in 2016. This earned the college its first silver designation from the All In Campus Democracy Challenge, a competition in which more than 1400 colleges and universities strive to reach full voter participation.
“It is important for young people to vote because we are quite literally the future, so it is up to us to take control and have a say in what goes on in the country because anything that happens directly affects us,” said Assiatou Diallo ’23, who has worked closely on voter engagement on campus. “The only way we can take control is by voting and making sure we get a leader that represents us well and actually listens to our needs.”
Kiki Griffin, director of women’s basketball operations at Manhattan College, was also selected as one of two recipients of the All In Campus Democracy Challenge’s 2021 Standout Athletic Coach Award.
Griffin connected with Dr. Margaret Groarke, professor of political science at Manhattan College, to engage participants of the school’s Black Lives Matter Vigil to make sure students, faculty and staff were registered to vote before the 2020 election.
Because of Griffin’s efforts, Manhattan College’s women’s basketball team was the first team on campus to achieve 100% voter registration and other teams in the Athletics Department quickly followed suit.
“Kiki makes it her life’s work to make sure student-athletes are engaged in their communities,” Groarke said. “She aspires to become a leader in intercollegiate athletics administration and the professional sports industry to bridge the gap between community engagement and athletes of all levels.”
Due to the efforts of the college’s voter engagement committee, 76.4% of eligible Manhattan College students were registered to vote in 2020, and 78.1% of registered students voted in the 2020 elections. The rate of registered students increased by nine percentage points from the 2018 elections.