Make Your Plan To Vote

What’s your voting plan?

The voting process can be confusing, especially for first-time voters. Making a plan to vote can reduce anxiety and increase the likelihood of you casting a ballot. This page contains information to help you make a plan.

How will you vote?

Determine if you are voting by absentee ballot, mail-in ballot, early, or in person.

  • Students have the option to vote with their school or home address.
  • State and city variations differ. Be sure you seek out your local board of elections to identify the best way for you to vote.
  • If you or anyone in your household are high risk, we encourage you to consider the safest way to cast your ballot based on public health guidance. That may include requesting and returning a ballot by mail.
Three students look at a laptop computer during a voter registration event
Managing election season stress

Strategies for maintaining your emotional equilibrium when current events bring up negative feelings

When will you vote?

  • What is your work or class schedule on Election Day when the polling locations are open? University employees are given two hours to vote during work hours on Election Day.
  • Due to your schedule, would it be better to vote early at an early voting location or mail in your ballot prior to the election?

Absentee voting: Why vote absentee?

Absentee voting allows you to safely vote by mail. Every U.S. state has its own rules on absentee voting. Enter your address at either U.S. Vote Foundation or to learn your absentee ballot process. You can also easily request your absentee ballot through TurboVote.

Plan ahead and request your ballot early because state deadlines and requirements for acceptance (post-mark date vs. received-by date) vary. Absentee ballots can be hand-delivered to your local board of elections.

Early voting: Who can vote early?

Some states allow early voting, meaning that you can cast your vote at a select location on a date before Election Day. Check your state’s laws regarding early voting and follow up on your state’s election website for more information about when and where you can vote early. 

In-person voting: How and where to vote

If you plan to vote in person on Election Day, you will need to locate your polling place based on the permanent address where you have registered to vote. Be sure to make a note of the hours during which your polling place is open and bring the following materials to the polls: 

  • Identification: Voter ID laws vary between states, so be sure to check your state’s voter ID requirements so that you are prepared
  • Voter registration card: You will be sent a voter registration card after you register; eep this in a safe place 

Read about the Candidates

Learn more about the candidates on your respective ballot by entering your address on either U.S. Vote, or BallotReady.

Updates from the Hub

Commencement 2021
Mike Bloomberg to give Commencement address
Published May 14, 2021
In an extraordinary year defined by the COVID-19 pandemic, JHU invites global champion of public health, visionary philanthropist, and alumnus to address graduates
Health policy
Surveys find strong support for COVID-19 mitigation measures over time
Published March 23, 2021
Large differences were seen by age, beliefs, and political affiliation and among those who trust science and those who do not
Hopkins Votes stickers
Hopkins Votes
JHU named Voter Friendly Campus
Published March 15, 2021
Hopkins is among 231 universities to receive the designation from a national coalition that measures voting accessibility at schools and universities across the nation