The 1998 Higher Education Act requires all post-secondary institutions to make a good-faith effort to distribute voter registration forms to each degree- or certificate-seeking student who attends classes on campus. The forms, which are supplied by each state, must be distributed before the registration cut-off date for every federal and gubernatorial election, as well as special elections for federal office. In 2008, the Higher Education Act was amended making it permissible to electronically distribute information related to voter registration.
The University of Texas at Dallas recognizes the need for responsible citizenship. Part of this responsibility includes the necessity to participate in federal, state and local elections. To comply with the Higher Education Act, students receive an email that provides them with information about how to register to vote. A link to the state voter registration site is included below, as well as information about the Higher Education Act.
Any student not registered to vote may obtain information at sos.state.tx.us/elections.
1998 Higher Education Act
Title IV - Student Assistance, Part G - General Provisions 489. Program Participation Agreements
PROVISION OF VOTER REGISTRATION FORMS
(1) PROGRAM PARTICIPATION REQUIREMENT- Section 487(a) (20 U.S.C. 1094(a)) is amended by adding at the end the following:
(23)(A) The institution, if located in a state to which section 4(b) of the National Voter Registration Act (42 U.S.C. 1973gg-2(b)) does not apply, will make a good faith effort to distribute a mail voter registration form, requested and received from the state, to each student enrolled in a degree or certificate program and physically in attendance at the institution, and to make such forms widely available to students at the institution.
(B) The institution shall request the forms from the state 120 days prior to the deadline for registering to vote within the state. If an institution has not received a sufficient quantity of forms to fulfill this section from the state within 60 days prior to the deadline for registering to vote in the state, the institution shall not be held liable for not meeting the requirements of this section during that election year.
(C) This paragraph shall apply to elections as defined in section 301(1) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 (2 U.S.C. 431(1)), and includes the election for governor or other chief executive within such State).
(2) REGULATION PROHIBITED- No officer of the executive branch is authorized to instruct the institution in the manner in which the amendment made by this subsection is carried out.
The Higher Education Amendments of 2008 added the following text to the Voter Registration Act:
(D) The institution shall be considered in compliance with the requirements of subparagraph (A) for each student to whom the institution electronically transmits a message containing a voter registration form acceptable for use in the state in which the institution is located, or an Internet address where such a form can be downloaded, if such information is in an electronic message devoted exclusively to voter registration.
Additional organizations that provide voter registration information: