Active Citizenship Guide
Many WSU students have expressed growing interest in becoming more actively involved in civic life. When thinking about how you can become more democratically engaged, here are a few tips.
Focus Your Efforts
- Pick Your Top Issues: There are hundreds of important issues, but it is impossible for one person to address them all! Pick a few issues that matter to you most to focus on.
- Identify Your Talents: Make a list of your talents and strengths to determine how best you can support your causes.
- Create Your Action Plan: With your top issues and list of talents, create an action plan for yourself.
Educate Yourself & Others
- Read: Educate yourself by reading and taking classes.
- Research: Find out who your representatives are and take time to research your issues.
- Follow: Like/follow social media pages for organizations you support.
- Listen: Attend meetings or events for groups to learn.
- Discuss: Share news and thoughts with your friends, family, and colleagues.
- Train: Take advantage of trainings that will help you be a better ally.
Simple (But Important) Actions
- Vote: Register to vote and vote in every election.
- Live Your Values: Avoid products that conflict with your causes.
- Donate: If you can, donate to causes that you support.
- Wear Your Cause: When you can, wear buttons, stickers, and shirts that share your cause.
- Write Your Reps: Write to and call your representatives to share your opinions.
- Write to the Newspaper: Write to your local newspaper about what current issues are important to you and why.
More Involved Actions
- Attend Events: Attend rallies, protests, and events to show your support.
- Attend Meetings: Attend local meetings like city council meetings and town hall meetings.
- Join Local Groups: Join student and community groups that align with your passions.
- Share Literature: Help spread the messages of groups you’re a part of or support by carrying their literature with you so you can share it.
- Register Voters: Help register others to vote.
- Volunteer: Volunteer with organizations that align with your top issues.
Most Intensive Actions
- Work: Look for internships and jobs that align with the issues you’re passionate about.
- Leadership: Become leader and organizer for groups you’re a part of or start your own.
- Run for Office: Become involved in politics by running for office.
Take Care of Your Wellbeing
- Self-Care: Lastly, take time out for self-care when you need it. You can spend time with friends/family, do something special that you enjoy, or read a good book, for example.
Pick the actions above that work best for you. Active citizenship is a process that unfolds differently for everyone, and volunteering for an organization is just as valuable as running for office.