Students stand up to vote


Thursday 14 February 2019



Students from Cambridge Regional College (CRC) have voted overwhelmingly to have the vote at an earlier age, if it were possible.

The college worked with Cambridge City Council, South Cambridgeshire District Council and Huntingdonshire District Council earlier this year to encourage students to register to vote and raise awareness of the process. They held a mock referendum using a voting booth and ballot box to make the process as similar as possible to the real thing in order to familiarise the students with the process of voting.

Out of a total of 232 students that attended the events, held across both Cambridge and Huntingdon campuses, the results showed that 65 per cent of students would vote if they had a choice at an earlier age. In the UK, the minimum voting age is 18, except in Scotland, where 16 and 17-year olds have been given the right to vote in local and Scottish parliamentary elections.

Sarah Allen, Student Liaison & Enrichment Co-ordinator at CRC, explained: “Young people engaging with politics from an early age is vital for the country’s success but for many the voting process is unfamiliar and an unknown. As a key step into adulthood and citizenship we have worked to ensure that learners get as many opportunities as possible to take part in voting and use voting equipment like ballot boxes and voting booths so that they become more confident and engaged with the process.”

The call to lower the voting age comes from a range of sources, adults as well as teenagers, backed up by youth organisations, pressure groups and politicians. Clearly the majority of students at Cambridge Regional College are hoping things may change in the future and they will have a voice in matters of national importance.