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  • Staff report

EPCC Poll Worker Program Hiring Students

BY ABIGAIL BELL


Manny Armendariz (L) and Crystal Robert


El Paso Community College (EPCC) is launching a new program to encourage student voters to get involved in the election process by recruiting students to be El Paso County poll workers.

 

The program, known as the Tejano Poll Worker Fellows Program (TPF), is recruiting at least 50 students per academic semester to be poll workers for the city of El Paso, to increase voting participation and address the need for election workers.

 

Students who participate in TPF have the opportunity to be paid $13 per hour by the City and receive a $200 stipend from EPCC for working a full 12-hour shift at the polls.

 

The program is supported by a $49,000 grant from the U.S. Election Assistance Commission’s Help America Vote College Program. EPCC was one of 14 national recipients for the program.

 

The TPF program is open to all EPCC students who meet certain criteria, including being eligible to vote in the elections they work, successfully completing the El Paso County Elections Office hiring process and election training, and working a 12-hour shift during the election. More detailed requirements can be found at epcountyvotes.com.

 

The director of the program, Crystal Robert, believes this program is invaluable to students as it helps them earn money and become informed about the election process.

 

“Ultimately, what it does is help students become more educated in regard to elections,” she said.

 

Robert was able to launch a pilot program with a few EPCC students this last election cycle.

 

“I just want to be a part of everything, I want to be a part of motivating,” said EPCC student Manny Armendariz. “I like to be that driving factor that gets the youngsters moving and motivated to do something.”

 

After participating in the program, Armendariz has become passionate about encouraging other students to get involved.

 

“I think that the election process in general is important,” he said. “I think that pushing the agenda of having your own opinion and having your own decision is important, especially for students.”

 

In addition to informing students about the election process and helping them become engaged voters, Robert believes this program will help students with expenses and academics.

 

“We have students that are in great need of money, and I think that this money can help pay for books, an extra class, living expenses, for food,” she said.

 

Robert wants this program to directly benefit students and hopes that it will continue to grow and positively impact students like Armendariz was impacted.

 

“I encourage people to get out there, get involved, and you know, get involved in the community,” Armendariz said.

 

To get involved with the EPCC Tejano Poll Worker Fellows program, contact Crystal Robert at (915) 831-2677, (915) 241-9348 or crober27@epcc.edu. The program will recruit during election cycles.

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