November 2, 2020

Dear UD Community,

The right to vote — to make your voice heard and counted in our democracy — is one of the most sacred in our society and an essential element in our American system of self-government. Tomorrow is Election Day in our nation, and I encourage all eligible members of the University of Delaware community who have not already done so to proudly exercise their right to vote for their chosen candidates.

This year, we reflect on significant milestones in our nation’s long and sometimes-difficult history of voting rights. This is the 150th anniversary of the ratification of the 15th Amendment, which provided constitutional protection for the voting rights of men regardless of race, and the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which guaranteed the same protection for women’s voting rights. Increasing access to the polls has not come quickly or easily, of course. Indeed, securing these rights has required additional actions and continued vigilance, as this year’s 55th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act reminds us. Our voting rights are precious and vital to the foundation of our democracy.

Here at UD, I am proud to see so many examples of civic engagement, driven by our longstanding commitment to building a strong community. Thanks to the dedicated efforts of more than 100 student organizations this fall, UD ranked third in a nationwide non-partisan competition to promote TurboVote, which helps U.S. citizens register to vote. Throughout the University, our research and expertise, enhanced by multiple speakers who come to UD to share diverse perspectives, help enable thoughtful public policy in education, health, economics, the environment, criminal justice and more.

As this year’s election season draws to a close, I am encouraged by the University of Delaware’s culture of civility, respect and support for one another. Thank you for everything you do to be engaged and contributing members of society.


signature of President Dennis Assanis

Dennis Assanis

University of Delaware   •   Newark, DE   •