Redistricting 101 

 What is Redistricting? 

Every 10 years, the U.S. government conducts a Census to determine the population of the country and where people live.

 

Census data is then used to redraw legislative districts for the U.S. Congress and state legislatures.

 

Each state is required to redraw their district lines to ensure that each district contains the same number of people.

 

This year, states are drawing new district lines that will be used for the next 10 years. This is referred  to as redistricting.

 What is Gerrymandering? 

Gerrymandering is a term used to describe the practice of drawing district lines in order to maximize an advantage of a political party.

This means that important considerations, like keeping communities of interest together, are not taken into account.

You will often hear terms like packing groups of people into as few districts as possible, or cracking a community into as many districts as possible, in order to dilute their power and influence.

Gerrymandering &
College Students

Campus communities are often targets of cracking, meaning that district lines often draw through or near colleges and universities.

Splitting these communities dilute college student voting power and influence with their elected officials.

Drawing Fair Maps

Fair maps should be drawn with input and guidance from the public. They should also take into account communities of interest, including colleges and universities.

We are encouraging college students to make their voices heard as part of their state's redistricting process.

Want this information in a printable, shareable format? Check out our state specific redistricting guides!

 

Additional Resources 

Community of Interest Map Drawing Webinar

Communities of Interest are groups or neighborhoods with shared interests that deserve fair, equitable, and just representation by elected officials. Drawing Community of Interest maps is a great way to think and learn more about what your community looks like! You can also submit your Community of Interest map to your state's redistricting officials so it can be considered as part of your state's redistricting process.

 

Check out our Community of Interest map drawing webinar, created by Megan Rickman Blackwood, a Campus Vote Project Redistricting Fellow at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Campus Boundaries Project 

The Campus Boundaries Project is a service of the Institute for Democracy and Higher Education (IDHE) at Tufts University’s Tisch College of Civic Life. The interactive tool allows users to see on a map where U.S. Congressional and state districts exist relative to college student communities of interest, where significant numbers of college and university students reside.

For guidance on how to use the tool check out this webinar. 

Ohio Redistricting Documentary

Democracy Fellow Daniela Acosta at Columbus State Community College created a short documentary about Ohio's redistricting process.

SLSV Redistricting Webpage

The Students Learn Students Vote Coalition has put together a webpage with more information and resources from across the coalition on redistricting.

Draw Your Community Events

Learn how to draw a map of your community and have your voice heard as part of  your state's* redistricting process!

*Only offered for select states. 

Redistricting Fellows

Select Your State to view the Redistricting Fellows serving your communities

Florida
Michigan
North Carolina
Ohio
Pennsylvania
Texas
Virginia
Wisconsin

Florida

Elizabeth Rodriguez

Elizabeth Rodriguez

Junior, Miami Dade College

Link to WrittenTestimony
Note: Meeting was not recorded/archived (see original meeting notice)

Florida

Michigan

Griffin Baginski

Junior, Western Michigan University

Griffin Baginski

Michigan
Jonathan Flynn

Jonathan Flynn

Michigan

North Carolina

Aaron Wrighton

Aaron Wrighton

North Carolina

Senior, Elizabeth City State University

Paige Anderholm

Paige Anderholm

North Carolina

Graduate Student, The London School of Economics

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Ohio

Aleena Babar

Aleena Babar

Ohio

Junior, Cleveland State University

Link to Written Testimony 

Lucy Bishop

Lucy Bishop

Ohio

First year, Columbus State Community College

Link to Written Testimony

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Arwa Elmashae

Arwa Elmashae

Ohio

Junior, Cleveland State University 

Link to Written Testimony

Pennsylvania

Bintou Fofana

Bintou Fofana

Pennsylvania

Sophomore, Allegheny College

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Michael Garza

Michael Garza

Pennsylvania

Freshman, Pennsylvania State University - Main Campus

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Brooklynn Jones

Brooklynn Jones

Pennsylvania

Freshman, Pennsylvania State University - Main Campus

Link to Testimony.

Link to Written Testimony

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Nevaya Warfel

Nevaya Warfel

Pennsylvania

Freshman, Pennsylvania State University - Main Campus

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Texas

CJ Cetina

CJ Cetina

Texas

Senior, Texas State University

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Jocelyn Carrera

Jocelyn Carrera

Texas

Senior, The University of Texas at El Paso 

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Virginia

Megan Rickman Blackwood

Megan Rickman
Blackwood

Virginia

Senior, Virginia Commonwealth University 

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Neli Williams

Neli Williams

Virginia

Junior, Virginia State University 

Callie Jordan

Callie Jordan

Virginia

Junior, The University of Mary Washington

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Wisconsin

Matthew Ghast

Matthew Gast

Wisconsin

Junior, University of Wisconsin - La Crosse

Link to Testimony

Link to Written Testimony

Vincent O'Neal

Vincent O’Neal

Wisconsin

Senior, Carthage College

William Kammerer

William Kammerer

Wisconsin

Junior, University of Wisconsin - Madison

Redistricting Fellows work with Campus Vote Project and their campus and community leaders to engage their campus populations and surrounding communities in the redistricting process by educating college students about the importance of a fair, transparent, and just process, creating tools and resources that inform people about their state’s process, and providing a college student voice throughout the process.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Additional Testimony

Democracy Fellow Ahmad Mitchell (PA) testified at a Pennsylvania Legislative redistricting public hearing on Tuesday, August 3, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Campus Vote Project's (then) Pennsylvania State Coordinator (now Midwest Regional Manager) Charles Black testified at a Pennsylvania Legislative redistricting public hearing on Tuesday, August 3, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Democracy Fellow Nickolas Bartel (PA) testified at a Pennsylvania Legislative redistricting public hearing on Tuesday, August 3, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Democracy Fellow Shakira Jackson (PA) testified at a Pennsylvania Legislative redistricting public hearing on Wednesday, August 4, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Campus Vote Project's North Carolina State Coordinator Kiani Gardner testified at a North Carolina redistricting public hearing at Forsyth Technical Community College on Tuesday, September 14, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Democracy Fellow Anitra Howard (VA) testified at a Virginia Redistricting Commission public hearing on Tuesday, October 5, focused on considering Virginia Wesleyan University and the surrounding Virginia Beach area as a Community of Interest as part of the redistricting process. Specifically, the campus and surrounding areas are currently together, albeit on or near State District borders, and should be kept together as such.

Campus Vote Project's Pennsylvania State Coordinator Ricardo Almodovar testified at a Pennsylvania Congressional redistricting public hearing on Wednesday, October 13, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Campus Vote Project's Midwest Regional Manager Chuck Black testified at a Pennsylvania Congressional redistricting public hearing on Wednesday, October 20, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Campus Vote Project's Michigan State Coordinator Landon Myers testified at a Michigan Independent Citizens redistricting commission public hearing on Thursday, October 21, highlighted concerns with Grand Valley State University, a campus that was not previously split, but is split between multiple districts at multiple levels of government in recent map proposals from the commission, as well as campuses like Oakland University, Washtenaw Community College, and Macomb Community College. Specifically, emphasized the importance of not approving any map proposals that split any campuses.

Campus Vote Project's Midwest Regional Manager Chuck Black testified at a Pennsylvania Governor's Redistricting Advisory Council listening session at Drexel University on Friday, October 29, focused on considering colleges and universities as Communities of Interest as part of the redistricting process.

Media

Article Features

Getty Images by John Moore
Inside Higher Ed logo

Partisan Gerrymandering Targets Campuses

JOHN MOORE/GETTY IMAGES

Fellow Op-eds & LTEs

Wisconsin

Matthew Gast

The Racquet Press

Ohio

Lucy Bishop

The Columbus Dispatch

Ohio

Aleena Baber

& Arwa Elmashae

The Cauldron

Virginia

Callie Jordan &

Megan Rickman Blackwood

Richmond Times-Dispatch

Michigan

Jonathan Flynn &
Katie Ellison

Lansing State Journal

Texas

CJ Cetina

The University Star

Michigan

Katie Ellison

Central Michigan Life

Florida

Andrew Taramykin

& Elizabeth Rodriguez

Tallahassee Democrat

north carolina

Paige Anderholm

Watauga Democrat

Texas

CJ Cetina &
Jocelyn Carrera

Texas Signal

Florida

Andrew Taramykin

The Alligator

Wisconsin

William Kammerer

The Badger Herald

Pennsylvania

Bintou Fofana, Brooklynn Jones, Michael Garza, & Nevaya Warfel

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

north carolina

Aaron Wrighton

The Compass

north carolina

Aaron Wrighton &

Paige Anderholm

Elizabeth City Daily Advance