Message from Honors’ Director

September 30, 2020

Message from Honors’ Director

Welcome back (or, simply “welcome” for those of you new to UW) beloved Honors Huskies. 

The Honors Program staff and I are so delighted to be working with you, helping you navigate this unusual moment in history as you make the most of your college education. We will do our best not to overwhelm you with our enthusiasm as your inboxes must surely be overflowing on this first day of classes!

You may already have seen this message from Dean Ed Taylor, urging you to get out the vote and connecting you with resources. I am writing to you now to ensure that you have the information you need to cast your votes and encourage voting this fall. 

This quote from a recent article in the L.A. Times resonates with how engaged you are in class and in community: 

“Young people don’t vote at lower rates than older people because they care less about the issues; they simply have less experience with our byzantine process. The problems that typically plague young people as a result — lack of information about how and where to vote, high levels of mobility, and lack of outreach from campaigns — will only worsen amid the pandemic.”

If you’re a U.S. citizen please vote! If you’re not a citizen, you will still be impacted by the elections and you have a voice! My colleagues in student life have published this set of resources to provide the info you need and to help you get out the vote this October and November! There are also MANY events being hosted by UW and/or by community organizations that can help inject a little joy (or at least camaraderie) into your engagement with the election. 

Here are just a few suggestions from the Honors Program staff:

Intiman Theater is mounting several free online performances of “The Race 2020,” September 25 – October 4. UW Honors night is this Friday: see event details here

KUOW is hosting a free online series of debate previews leading up to election night

UW has dozens of wonderful public events lined up on this election and related issues (including a post-election lecture by Honors’ new Joff Hanauer Professor of Western Civilization, Daniel Bessner.

I see you leaning in, not leaning away. I see you activating your fellow students, asking great questions and really listening, even when you disagree with the response. You can bring your passion for understanding, for connecting ideas and advocating for what matters to you into this fall’s election. 

All the best, 


VICTORIA LAWSON, Ph.D., Director, UW Honors Program, Professor of Geography | 206.221.6075 , Pronouns: She/Her

Use your voice in this election

Note: after sending this message my colleague suggested we add a link to’s online design lab, with lots of great free images (like the poster above) and campaign tools that promote democracy and equity in our culture. We’re counting on you to stand up and be counted!