By LEXI MUELLER
Over the course of the campaign season, Drake University has become a hotspot for several candidates hoping to launch themselves into the spotlight. But in the past week, Kamala Harris’ campaign has taken that one step further with their Bulldogs For the People initiative.
This student-based approach started Wednesday morning with the Bulldogs For the People Move-In Canvassing event and was designed to help Drake students become more involved with organizing on campus and learn helpful skills that will allow them to be active in politics far beyond the Iowa caucuses.
Move-in day was a new experience for many incoming first-years and the addition of political canvassing added in a mix of activism,
“The event held during move-in weekend went super well,” said Darby Holroyd, a student involved in the initiative. “We helped students register to vote and signed others up for updates about our campaign as a whole.”
Students attending Drake this year will have the chance to experience the presidential race from up close. With the Iowa Caucuses playing such a large role in candidate selection, almost all of the big name candidates have shown their face around campus. This presidential election, many candidates are working to appeal to college students to help them gain majority vote.
“It is so incredibly important to get students involved because we are the next generation that have the ability to shape politics in our country,” said Holroyd. “Our generation is especially impacted by the current political climate.
According to Holroyd, college students are crucial to Kamala Harris’s campaign since she understands the value of young people and how fresh their ideas can be.
“We understand that younger people have energy and drive,” Holroyd said. “They are important to our campaign because they are the people that will shape the future of politics.”
Deidre DeJear is Harris’s Iowa Campaign Chair and, as a former Drake student herself, stressed the importance of college political activism.
“I really got my start in politics through active engagement at Drake,” said DeJear. “Our campaign is going to show students that their voices matter, and that their activism for Kamala Harris can just be the start of their political involvement in Iowa.”
Harris’s campaign has been working to engage students around the country after being the first candidates to launch a student training program last spring. Since then, there has been an increase in political involvement on campus.
“I have seen a lot of students join in on the caucuses and on our campaign due to this program and we created Bulldogs For the People to build on this excitement,” said Holroyd. “The more students who are informed on what it means to be a part of a presidential campaign, it helps creates a larger crowd of informed voters and Kamala supporters.”
Harris’s campaign will be continuing their mission to get students involved with programs like “Camp Kamala” and their new “Campus Caucus Trainings.”
At a school like Drake University, it is almost impossible to ignore the politics swirling around campus during the Iowa Caucus season. Holroyd said that students should keep on the lookout for more ways to get involved,
“We will be canvassing quite a bit on campus and holding exciting events throughout the semester,” Holroyd said. “Keep your eyes open.”