ARTS FOR CIVIC ENGAGEMENT
Students may compete in three categories:
American democracy requires robust political participation: voting, holding representatives accountable, and ensuring that government represents the people. A society lacking in citizen participation is more prone to inefficiency, corruption, and unresponsive government. Texas ranks among the lowest states in the country in citizen political participation.
- Out of the voting-eligible population in Texas, 46.3 percent voted in the 2018 midterm election.
- Texas ranked 47th in voter turnout and 44th for voter registration for the 2016 presidential election.
- Only 32% of Texans ages 18 to 24 voted in the 2016 election. Older Texans voted at a much higher rate, although still below the national average in every age group.
The program aims to combat these dismal statistics by preparing Texas high school students to take civic leadership positions in generating public awareness on the importance of voting and using their artistic skills to reshape perspectives on civic responsibility. Texas civic life needs an infusion of innovation from young people and art is a powerful cultural tool to deliver their messages and inspire action.