Student Voting Poll Workers


Photo by University of Wisconsin-Madison

Voting poll booths. Photo by Jeff Miller for University of Wisconsin-Madison News

While some students at BVN are first-time voters this year, other students found alternative ways of getting involved in the 2020 election. X students chose to do so by volunteering as poll workers at local polling stations. 

Senior Joshua DeWolfe on his day off while many students were at home doing asynchronous learning, DeWolfe worked the voting polls at BVN,  According to Dewolfe, working the polls was part of an assignment for a class offered during election years known as “America Decides.”

 “I did it for my America Decides class because my teacher requires us to do something concerning the election and I chose to work the polls for one of them,” DeWolfe said, “Since I’m only 17 I needed my teacher to sign a sheet saying that the election people can trust me, and then I sent them that sheet in the mail. A couple of days later I got sent an email telling me to go to a training seminar, and so I did that and then waited for Election Day.” 

Senior Sofia Lamento also worked the voting polls at BVN. According to Lamento, working to voting polls was a lot of work and obstacles arose in the process. One of the obstacles being provisional voters which means people who believe they are registered to vote but are not on the official voting registration. 

“The [number] of provisional voters we had was crazy, either address changes, wrong location, or name changes,” Lamento said.

When asked if she would recommend this to other high school and future high school students Lamento said she would but to be prepared for a long day.

I would but it is a really really long day so make sure you get a good night’s rest and drink some coffee,” Lamento said.

Senior Clara Taylor was another student among blue valley north who contributed to working the voting polls in the 2020 election, according to Taylor she made her decision to work the polls because she was not yet old enough to vote herself and still wanted to make an impact on the 2020 election. 

“I worked the polls because I was frustrated I wasn’t old enough to vote,” Taylor said. “I knew I had to do something to contribute to this monumental election. I wanted to be a part of it.”

There were a lot of different tasks under the title of a voting poll worker according to Taylor. All the different jobs worked together to make the election go as smoothly as possible.

“Some of the jobs I did throughout the day included checking people in through a device called a poll pad,  escorting voters to their polling booth, sanitizing the polling booths, processing provisional voters, and assisting voters cast their vote in a scanning machine,” Taylor said.

Working as a voting poll worker was a great experience according to Taylor, who stated she would do it again in the next election and felt good knowing she was able to do something to help her community. 

“I felt really good working the polls knowing I was able to contribute to my community and my country,” Taylor said. “Make a difference despite not being able to vote in this election. I knew this election was monumental and I could not sit back and watch it all happen without being a part of it.”