According to a variety of polls, millennials are shaping up to buck the trend of low voter turnout. So NBC7’s Marianne Kushi wanted to find out for herself -- are young voters really planning to vote in the midterm elections?
A Tufts University study of the voting rate at schools across the country shows UC San Diego with an extremely low voting rate of 6.9% among 18- to 21-year-olds in the 2014 midterm.
Overall, the voting rate among young voters in the 2014 midterm election was just 11 percent.
When looking at voting rates among fields of study, the lowest turnout came from computer science and communication majors with a little over 6 percent voting rate. Education and history mahors had the highest with about 23 percent voter turnout, according to the Tufts University study.
Marianne Kush talked to UC San Diego students about the biggest obstacle to voting and what’s different for them this time.
In a series of conversations, you’ll hear that it’s not voter apathy that keeps them from the polls or mailing their ballot. You’ll also see that they have some wide-ranging views on what's important.
Take a listen as they describe why they are heading to the polls:
The Youth Factor: Turning Out to Vote for Others
Sophomore Brianna Brawley is the president of UCSD College Democrats and she says candidates need to have more face time with students and students should get paid for working for campaigns and compares it to a paid internship.
The Youth Factor: Turning Out to Vote for Immigration Issues
Elia Peralta grew up in Tijuana and has a lot on her mind. Immigration for one and she believes her age group is very informed on today’s issues.
The Youth Factor: Turning Out to Vote for Small Government
Mikaela McNally is the president of College Republicans at UCSD. She says that the gas tax proposition and Prop 10-rent control will drive her to the polls. She is studying neuroscience and will join the military after graduation.
The Youth Factor: Turning Out to Vote for Environmental Issues
Mark Holton is a junior at UC San Diego. He grew up in L.A. and is studying Bio-Informatics. His passion for politics led him to become Executive Director of SOVAC (Student Organized Voter Access Committee). He gave a not-often-heard reason for getting into politics.
The Youth Factor: Turning Out to Vote for Healthcare
Mohamed Al Elew is a senior at UC San Diego who was raised in Lincoln, Nebraska. He majors in Computer Science and he is the Editor-in-Chief of the independent student newspaper: "The Triton." He’s worried about one thing in particular when it comes to the future: Healthcare.
The Youth Factor continues Tuesday. Watch the series live from 4:30 to 7 a.m. on NBC 7 News Today.