Asian American Student Union, Wildcat Votes band together to promote voting

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Wildcat votes partners with Asian American student union. Handing out pho and educating people about the upcoming election. Oct 31, 2019. (Dylan Connell | Collegian Media Group)

With elections creeping around the corner, some student organizations at Kansas State are taking action to promote voting registration. This week, the Asian American Student Union partnered with Asian Pacific Islander American Vote and Wildcat Votes to encourage turnout among students.

Sabine Hoff, member of AASU, APIA vote representative and freshman in bakery science, said the partnered event “It’s pho-n to vote,” which ran Tuesday through Thursday this week, was set up to remind people to vote in the Nov. 5 elections.

“So we have pho noodles and seasoning packets that students can just take if they want,” she said. “We also [had] resources at the table just in case anyone [wanted] more information on candidates, on what is going to be in the elections. We also [had] a few registration forms because you can register basically anytime of the year. Unfortunately for this next election, it is too late to be registered to vote.”

In Tuesday’s election, Kansas voters will decide how the state deals with census numbers.

Currently, Kansas adds their numbers with federal numbers to redraw legislative districts — and individuals like college students and military personnel aren’t counted where they live, but rather where their “permanent” home is.

Hoff said the partnership between AASU, APIAVote and Wildcat Votes will help the organizations increase engagement on campus and inform people of how important the census is to their community.

“I believe the APIA community at K-State makes up less than one percent of the population, so it’s really important for us to partner with Wildcats Vote to show that our community does have voice,” she said.

Hoff said AASU often holds workshops after meetings to inform members on issues that impact the Asian American community. For example, Hoff said recently the club did a presentation on the protests occurring in Hong Kong and what should be known.

“AASU’s goal is just to spread awareness about Asian American culture. And also, just to celebrate it,” Hoff said.

AASU is always looking for new members and supporters, and Hoff said students don’t have to be Asian to join.

“When [the multicultural student organizations] began, that’s what they were looking for,” she said. “They were looking for a community of just not only people that they can relate to, but a community where they can feel safe and that doesn’t necessarily mean to come from the same backgrounds — but just a community of support.”

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Hi there! I'm Julie Freijat and I'm a copy chief and an assistant news editor for the Collegian. I love science and technology, hate poor movie dialogue and my favorite subreddit is r/truecrime.