Elections 2023: The Phoenix’s Guide to Voting

The Phoenix has put together a list of voter questions.

With election day around the corner, Loyola students from different states may be wondering how they’re able to vote while away at college. 

The upcoming off-year election falls on Tuesday, Nov. 7 for anyone who fulfills the voting requirements of being at least 18 years of age, a citizen of the U.S. and having lived within their election jurisdiction for at least 30 days can submit their ballots. 

Local initiatives will be on the ballot in this election for voters to cast their votes on. The Phoenix has compiled a list of voting guidelines for first-time voters to help with the process.

How do I register to vote?

Voting registration can be done by mail, online or in-person. Voter registration deadlines for each state can be located on Vote.org. Registering to vote online in Illinois can be done through Vote.org’s website up to 16 days before election day.

In Illinois, the online voter registration deadline is sixteen days before election day and the mail-in deadline is 28 days before election day. 

To register by mail, a ballot can be requested at the National Association of Secretaries of State website. Voters select their state from the drop-down menu and will be led to resources on where to request their mail-in ballot and mailing information for the selected state. 

In-person voter registration in Illinois is available every day up to and including election day. To register in-person, show up to the polling location within your jurisdiction. 

Loyola’s vice president of government affairs Phil Hale, created Loyola Votes in 2018 and said their main role is to provide resources for students to register to vote especially as the 2024 presidential election approaches. 

“It’s important that we give them the tools so they can vote,” Hale said. “It begins and ends with the website and creating opportunities for them to register.” 

Where do I go to vote?

For Illinois residents who wish to vote in-person, the nearest polling location can be located through the Illinois’ polling place locator by inputting your zip code.

Loyola’s Lake Shore and Water Tower campuses both act as polling locations, according to Loyola Votes. However, voters should prioritize checking their polling location through the polling place locator.

At Lake Shore, the polling location is located in the Centennial Forum Student Union in Mertz Hall at 1125 W. Loyola Ave., and the Water Tower Campus polling location is in McGuire Hall at 1 E. Pearson St.

Illinois polling locations will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m., according to Ballotpedia

Registration prior to voting in-person isn’t necessary and can be done at your designated polling location. In some states, a form of identification is required for in-person voting. For Illinois voters, a form of ID is not required to vote in-person unless it’s the voter’s first time voting in a federal election. 

To find out if ID is required for in-person voting in a different state, the National Conference of State Legislature website outlines the ID requirements for each state.  

Sadie Walden, second-year student worker for Loyola Votes, said additional information can be located on the Loyola Votes website

“Our main goal is just driving people to resources,” Walden said. “I want to make sure everybody in this country, if they’re eligible, has the resources they need to get to where they’re voting.” 

How do I vote outside of Illinois?

Voters from out-of-state who wish to vote in their hometown can do so by requesting an absentee ballot. 

An absentee ballot can be requested on Vote.org for students who are registered to vote in their home states. The Loyola Votes website emphasizes the importance of checking your state specific deadlines if you wish to submit an absentee ballot. 

To find additional information or resources on voting, visit the Loyola Votes website

Featured Image by Austin Hojdar / The Phoenix

Laila Ali

Laila Ali