Registering to Vote | Pacific Votes
The first step toward making your voice heard is to get registered— an easy process completed online and with lots of flexibility built-in for college students. You have the choice to vote in Oregon or in another home state.
Voting in Oregon
Oregon votes by mail. You may register at your university address (e.g. a dorm room, off-campus apartment), or, at a permanent residence in another Oregon county (e.g. your parent’s home, if you still consider that your permanent residence). You can also choose to have your ballot mailed to you at college but have your vote count at your permanent address - which may have different options for local candidates or measures.
To register, visit Oregon Votes and select “Register to Vote”. You must be a U.S. Citizen, a resident of Oregon, and at least 16 years old (but you will have to wait for 18 to cast a vote). To complete the online form, you will need an Oregon DMV number (from a driver's license/permit/ID card) or you can provide the last four digits of your social security number.
The Oregon Secretary of State maintains a special voting page for students where you can find answers to unique questions like “What if I am studying abroad during an election?”
The deadline to register is 21 days before the election. If you are already registered, you should still confirm that you have the correct address on file, as this is the only way you will receive your ballot. To check your mailing address, visit Oregon Votes and select “My Vote”.
Voting in Other States
If you plan to return home after college and prefer to maintain a different state as your primary residence, you do not need to register in Oregon and can instead file an absentee ballot in your home state. Visit www.usa.gov/absentee-voting for the absentee voting process in your home state. Remember that your home state may have an earlier registration deadline than Oregon.
Regardless of where you are registered, please remember that you can only legally cast a single vote, so don't make the mistake of filling out an absentee ballot for your home state and a local ballot in Oregon.
Want to check that your registration is up-to-date?
Whether you are voting in Oregon or by absentee ballot in another state, you will be casting your ballot by mail. This means it is vital you have a current mailing address on file. To check your registration details we recommend using BallotReady - it is helpful no matter which state you plan to vote in.
Need a little more inspiration?
Pacific students in the Spring 2019 "Video for Civic Engagement" class shared their thoughts on voting at Pacific in these short videos: