Youth Vote: Insights from the College Experience Survey and Pinoy Voter’s Vibe: Youth Edition

As of October 2021, more than 4,000,000 first-time voters registered for the upcoming national elections, making the youth sector account for half of the country’s voter base. This fact underscores the power of the Youth vote to influence election outcomes and determine the next set of leaders. Using data on freshmen students who participated in the 2020-2021 CES, FPPC Consultant Justin Muyot looked at how student characteristics related to voter registration and socio-political views.

Observations / Recommendations

Future voter registration efforts should equally encourage both males and females. Voter registration is associated with assigned sex at birth. Females are more likely to be registered voters when compared to males.

Targeted voter registration efforts can be employed on students who have publicly shared their opinion or signed online petitions. Voter registration is associated with student engagement. Students who have publicly shared their opinion online or signed online petitions are more likely to be registered voters when compared to those who have not publicly shared their opinions.

Voter registration can begin earlier. Student activities in SHS offer avenues where voter registration efforts can be implemented. Voter registration is associated with participation in activities of student organizations. Students who spent time in SHS to attend activities of organizations and student government are more likely to be registered voters.

Usefulness of social media should be studied further. Students spend a lot of time checking social media platforms. However, voter registration is NOT associated with time spent checking social media platforms.

Topics on which many students are undecided:

Public services
(Who should provide? Who should pay? If markets provide and/or private individuals pay, should government regulate? )

Economic growth and the environment
(How do we reconcile seemingly competing objectives of growth and environmental protection? )

Assigned sex at birth is associated with 17 out of 19 statement. Student engagement is associated with all 19 statements. Consider if certain topics have different implications according to assigned sex at birth. For issues “closer” to a specific sex (e.g., legal and safe abortion for females), make additional efforts to increase appreciation of the opposite sex.

Students engagement is associated with all 19 statements. Giving students space to discuss their opinion can be a good exercise in continuously refining socio-political views. While voting is an individual act, results have societal impact.

Spending time on activities of studen organizations is associated with 16 out of 19 statements. Outside of the classroom, student activities provide an avenue for discussion with peers. Common student activities like fora, discussion groups, and documentary screenings provide opportunities to probe topics deeper.

Words from panelists and presenters

“Students who publicly express their opzinion online or sign online petitions are more likely to be registered voters. Moving forward, limited resources for voter registration efforts could be targeted to individuals who share opinions or support causes.

Mr. Justin Muyot, FPPC Research Consultant

“Evidence points to the existence of revisionist narratives in educational materials. Therefore, the leadership of the Department of Education should get onboard in countering fake news. Educational materials should be screened and checked for inconsistencies with historical facts.

Dr. Imelda Deinla, Ateneo Policy Center

“Especially with the 2022 Elections underway, our fellow youth should engage in actual, personal discussions with their friends and right at their homes, keeping in mind to emphasize facts without being abrasive and alienating.”

Mr. Riegel Alvaran, TAMang Boto Proponent

“Academic institutions are the first line of defense in fighting fake news. Teachers have a big role to play in guiding students in analyzing and creating a habit of verifying news and information they see online before sharing.”

Mr. Glenn Concepcion , Academic Services Coordinator, FEU Office od Student Development

“Academic institutions must provide students with learning opportunities to instill the importance of election as a collective chance to dismiss corrupt officials and place deserving leaders who can change the course of the country.”

Ms. Ching Jorge, Chief of Party Youth Leadership for Democracy (YOUTHLED)