Special tram route arranged for Election Day
The Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at USC is taking measures to ensure that students, faculty and the public can reach the polls with ease on Election Day. On Nov. 6, the institute, in partnership with USC Transportation, will run a free tram throughout the day, stopping at polling stations both on and off campus.
The free tram buses, which can be tracked at usctrams.com, will run from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., departing every 20 minutes. The last bus will depart Leavey Library at 8 p.m.
In 2008, USC had only two polling places — one on the University Park Campus and one adjacent. But the current student population was large enough to suggest that more stations could be added, said Kerstyn Olson, Unruh Institute deputy director. The polling station previously available at Marks Tower is now gone. During the primaries, a new station was added at the Cardinal Gardens housing complex, which attracted a fair amount of foot traffic.
There are five locations on or near campus, including Cardinal Gardens Customer Service Center, the Arts & Humanities Residential College at Parkside (Room 1217), USC Catholic Center, Our Savior Parish (3201 University Ave.), Hoover Recreation Center and North Residential College’s Harris Hall.
Ensuring that students exercise their right to vote has always been a priority for the Unruh Institute, Olson noted.
“Voting is using your voice to make your claim in the world,” she said.
In 2008, the institute worked with College Republicans and College Democrats to hold voter registration drives. Since then, such drives have been held during summer orientation to ensure that students start thinking about registering “from the moment they step on campus.”
In addition to scheduling the Election Day tram, the institute will host a viewing party of election results in the Ronald Tutor Campus Center’s outdoor plaza.
Record numbers of attendees at this year’s election debate viewing parties suggest that election night will be another busy evening. Olson said organizers are hoping for as many as 400 students on Nov. 6. Large screens will be brought out to the plaza to accommodate the participants.
“The signs point toward much more involvement and enthusiasm than in 2008,” Olson said, emphasizing that the event isn’t just for students. “This is a free service that the community can take advantage of. It’s not just for USC students, faculty and staff — it’s for anyone.”
In addition, the USC College Democrats and the USC College Republicans will be co-hosting “Get Out the Vote” efforts throughout the day in the Annenberg East Lobby beginning at noon.
Polling locations on or near campus, based on USC housing locations:
If you live at: Cardinal Gardens, Century or LaSorbonne
Then vote at: Cardinal Gardens Customer Service Center
If you live at: Webb Tower, Flour Tower, Arts & Humanities Residential College at Parkside or International Residential College at Parkside
Then vote at: Parkside Arts and Humanities, Room 1217
If you live at: Troy Hall, Troy East or Cardinal and Gold
Then vote at: USC Catholic Center, Our Savior Parish at 3201 University Ave.
If you live at: The north side of the The Row or Severance Street Apartments
Then vote at: Hoover Recreation Center
If you live at: The south side of The Row
Then vote at: USC Catholic Center, Our Savior Parish
If you live at: Marks Hall, Marks Tower, Pardee Tower, New Residential College, North Residential College, Trojan Hall and Birnkrant Residential College
Then vote at: Harris Hall (North Residential College)