Students met in the University Union (UU) in Chumash Auditorium to vote Tuesday, in what precinct inspector Val Barboza said was one of the largest attendances she has seen from students.

“This is really the best (turnout) I have seen except for the last presidential election,” said Barboza, the inspector of Precinct 527 on campus. There are 32 precincts in San Luis Obispo.

Barboza said the amount of students who showed up on campus to vote outnumbered what she had seen in previous elections, including the special elections over summer.

“It’s really sad because this summer when we had the special elections you literally could bring your knitting and sit here or play Monopoly or something,” Barboza said.“There wasn’t much interest.”

Now, Barboza said, it’s been the total opposite. Students seem more involved and they are voting about various propositions and participating in something that seemed like a complete disinterest before.

“I think it is higher profile (now),” Barboza said. “A long time ago, the campus was pretty apathetic when it came around to voting. The numbers were really low.”

County Clerk Recorder Julie Rodewald said the campus polling station is experiencing heavy voter traffic. While no numbers could be confirmed during the election process, Rodewald said the numbers were already showing one of the biggest turnouts in years.

“I won’t say that this is going to surpass the 2008 elections,” Rodewald said. “But it is definitely a lot more activity than we have seen in other elections at Cal Poly.”

Rodewald said a reason for the large turnout on campus is because more students are living on campus. The influx of new student housing on campus such as Poly Canyon are causing more students to register to vote on campus, she said.

Sociology freshman Julianne Falore was one of those students.

“It is really convenient to just come down and vote here,” Falore said. “I was pretty excited to vote and be a part of the SLO community, getting more involved.”

Falore said she was just one of many students who she knew was looking forward to voting.

“A lot of people in my dorm are really excited to get out and vote,” Falore said. “I even came with a couple friends and we were just like ‘Let’s got vote, we need to go vote.’”

Civil engineering junior Scott Shepard, who voted Tuesday, also said he knew many students who wanted to vote. He said the common belief among the community is students don’t care about politics isn’t correct.

“We care,” Shepard said. “We just don’t care about the same things they care about.”

That belief is reflected in the numbers. Not only at Cal Poly, but other polling stations around San Luis Obispo are experiencing the same kind of turnout as the on-campus precincts.

“It seems to be very busy in our polling places,” Rodewald said. “We have had nearly a record number of vote-by-mail ballots issued; we are expecting up to 15,000 turned in at the polls today … and we are hearing reports at our polling places that they are very, very busy.”

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