Thursday, June 16, 2022
  Around Campus

By Amanda A. Taylor-Uchoa

RIO GRANDE VALLEY, TEXAS – UTRGV recently accomplished an All IN Campus Democracy Challenge, a national initiative committed to engaging higher education institutions in the democratic process by encouraging students to vote.  

The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge empowers colleges and universities to achieve excellence in nonpartisan student democratic engagement.  

Campuses that join the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge complete a set of action items, with the support of ALL IN Challenge staff, to institutionalize nonpartisan civic learning, political engagement and voter participation on campus.  

“One of the greatest privileges and freedoms we have in our country is the right to vote. It is how we choose our leaders, voice our opinions on a variety of issues and enact change,” said Veronica Gonzales, UTRGV senior vice president for Governmental and Community Relations.  

“At UTRGV, we are part of the ALL IN Challenge because we want our students to be engaged in shaping their future, and we know that if they make it a habit to vote now that they are young, they will become lifelong voters,” she said.  

The acknowledgment followed a call-to-action letter sent out April 21 by the U.S. Department of Education, promoting student voter registration participation. The letter encouraged higher education institutions to highlight their responsibilities under the Higher Education Act to make a good faith effort to distribute voter registration forms to enrolled students.  

The letter was prompted by President Biden’s Executive Order #14019 on Promoting Access to Voting, which directed an all-of-government effort to promote information about the voting process and to further the ability of all eligible Americans to participate in democracy. 

The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge community is currently engaged with more than 9 million students from 865 institutions in all 50 states.


The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) was created by the Texas Legislature in 2013 as the first major public university of the 21st century in Texas. This transformative initiative provided the opportunity to expand educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley, including a new School of Medicine, and made it possible for residents of the region to benefit from the Permanent University Fund – a public endowment contributing support to the University of Texas System and other institutions.

UTRGV has campuses and off-campus research and teaching sites throughout the Rio Grande Valley including in Boca Chica Beach, Brownsville (formerly The University of Texas at Brownsville campus), Edinburg (formerly The University of Texas-Pan American campus), Harlingen, McAllen, Port Isabel, Rio Grande City, and South Padre Island. UTRGV, a comprehensive academic institution, enrolled its first class in the fall of 2015, and the School of Medicine welcomed its first class in the summer of 2016.