OSWEGO, N.Y.– This year, thousands of young voters will cast their first-ever ballot in a presidential election. For many of them it was hard to miss the political content that has taken over social media platforms, changing the structure of the campaign as we know it.
“If we want to be represented and have things represent us we have to use our voices,” SUNY Oswego senior Esther Loja said.
Loja is the media strategist for Vote Oswego — a student run program that helps members of the Oswego community make an impact in the election by stressing the importance of political participation no matter the political affiliation.
“Young voters are getting to engage in issues they specifically care about on social media,” Loja said.
With the continual growth of online communities and social media platforms voters have gained more access to political campaigns and election news.
“I think that sometimes people don’t like that they use social media as a means to express themselves and to share,” Public Relations Professor Lindsey McCluskey said. “But I think it’s really great as a way for them to be engaged and to learn and sort through their feelings about issues and candidates.”
Helping young voters understand their power is key to youth participation in this year’s election.
“Even if we don’t care now, or we think this election isn’t going to affect us directly right now, Loja said. “Any official you elect now & the policies that they end up having will affect you in the future.”
This year’s election could very well break 2020 voter participation records. Surpassing more than half of all 2016 ballots cast.