Join thousands of other Highlanders and make sure your voice is heard in every local, state and federal election.
Don’t Wait, Register Today!
Register to Vote
It’s fast and easy to register online to vote. Every election is your opportunity to have a say in decisions affecting your community. When you don’t vote, you’re letting others decide your future. Remember, no matter the outcome, voting sends a message about the policies and people that shape your world.Register to Vote
Apply to Vote-by-Mail
We highly recommend that all students register to vote-by-mail. When registering to vote, you can select to become a permanent vote-by-mail voter. It is the easiest and most convenient way to vote. Use your current UCR address as your "mailing address" to receive your ballot in the mail while at UCR. If you're already registered to vote in California, visit the Secretary of State website to learn how to become a vote-by-mail voter.Apply to Vote-by-Mail
Why You Should Vote-by-Mail.
Vote at your pace — from the comfort of home.
Voting by mail is the absolute easiest way to vote. You get your ballot in the mail with plenty of time to carefully read about all of the candidates and measures in the comfort of your home. When complete, you can drop your ballot in the mail (No postage required!) or bring it to ANY polling site in the state of California on election day and they will take care of the rest. UCR will even have multiple drop off locations around campus to make this more convenient for you.
What address should you use when registering to vote-by-mail?
When you register/apply to vote-by-mail you will need to provide a residence/permanent address and a mailing address. The residence/permanent address you provide will ensure your ballot is customized to include measures applicable for that area/neighborhood. Your mailing address will dictate where that ballot gets mailed to (the place you live at while at UCR).
California Voter FAQ
Am I eligible to register to vote?
You can register to vote in California if you are:
- A U.S. citizen and a resident of California.
- 18 years of age or older on Election Day.
- Not currently imprisoned or on parole for a felony conviction.
- Not found by a court to be mentally incompetent to vote.
Note: Online pre-registration is now available for eligible 16- and 17- year olds. California youth who pre-register to vote will have their registration become active once they turn 18 years old.
If I am a student at UCR that doesn’t live with my family, what should I list as my address?
If you plan to vote in person, you can use whichever address you consider to be your residence, either your college address or your family address, but not both. Keep in mind, if you register to vote using your family address (say, in Orange County) you will have to travel to that county to vote.
However, when you apply to vote-by-mail you have the option to list separate home and mailing addresses. This allows you to vote on measures and candidates back home from here.
- Home Address: This is the location you want your ballot to represent. This is likely your family home, but you can also list the current address you live at while you attend UCR. Whatever address you pick as your home address, your ballot will include measures specific to that area. Home address is also sometimes called a residence or permanent address.
- Mailing Address: This is where you want information and documents about elections to be mailed to. If you signed up to be a vote-by-mail voter, this is where your ballot will go. If you plan to list your address where you currently live while attending UCR (e.g. your res hall, apartment or house), be sure to include your unit number, mailbox or apartment number. You need to provide a complete address.
Will there be polling places on the UCR campus?
If you live in campus housing and list that as your home address when you register to vote, you will be registered to vote in Riverside County and your assigned polling place will probably be on the UCR campus.
If you are registered to vote in Riverside County, but are assigned to a polling place off campus, you can still vote at one of UCR’s polling places using a provisional ballot. Read the next FAQ to learn more.
If you are registered to vote with an address outside of Riverside County, you will not be able to vote at UCR's polling sites. Your vote will not count. If you are a vote-by-mail voter, however, no matter what address you are registered with — even if it is outside of Riverside County — you can drop off your vote-by-mail ballot at any UCR polling site. This is why voting by mail is the best possible option for everyone.
What if I can’t make it to my assigned polling place on election day?
If you are registered to vote-by mail, you can bring your completed ballot to any official California polling place on election day. This includes UCR's polling sites and all UCR vote-by-mail drop off locations.
If you are not registered to vote-by mail, you can vote using a provisional ballot at any official California polling place so long as it is within the county where you are registered.
For instance, if your assigned polling place is near Tyler Mall, but decide to vote at one of the UCR campus polling places, you will miss out on certain candidates and measures specific to that Tyler Mall area, but ultimately, your vote will count for state and federal elections.
However, if you cast a provisional ballot in a county different than the one you are registered in (let’s say you are registered to vote in San Diego County but cast a provisional ballot in Riverside County), your ballot will be rejected by the receiving county and your vote will not count!
This is why we recommend that you register to vote-by-mail! Whether your home is in Riverside County or not, voting by mail is incredibly easy.
Do I need to re-register if I move?
Yes. If you (as a registered voter) move to a new address — even within the same county — you need to either re-register to vote or update your registration with a written notice to your county elections official. (You can choose to re-register to vote using a temporary or permanent home address, but you can't register to vote in two places during the same election cycle.)
Do I need to re-register if I change my surname or political party?
Yes. If you legally change your name or wish to change your registered political party, you need to re-register to vote.
Where can I learn whether I’m registered to vote or not?
Use online tools provided by the California Secretary of State to learn if you are registered to vote in California, the status of your vote-by-mail ballot and more.
- How can I help with voter education and outreach?
- I still have questions. Who can I contact?
UCR's Student Registration and Voting
Find out how UCR's student registration and voting rates measure up: