Election Activities Policy at Dickinson

This online policy content is provided as a resource for the students, faculty, staff, and administration of Dickinson College. Content is subject to change. Please contact the appropriate person or office to obtain the most current information.

Dickinson College encourages its students to participate in national, state, and local political activities to prepare themselves for active lives as engaged citizens. While all students, faculty, and staff are free to express political opinions and engage in political activities, it is important that they avoid the appearance that they are speaking or acting for the college in political matters.

As a non-profit, private institution of higher education whose activities are regulated in part by Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, Dickinson College may not participate or intervene in the political campaign of any candidate for public office. Federal Elections Commission regulations also prohibit Dickinson College from facilitating the making of contributions or funding communications that influence, or are intended to influence, the outcome of federal elections. Nevertheless, every individual has the right to organize and to join political associations and to advocate and publicize political opinions. In addition, student groups on campus have the opportunity to provide educational and programmatic activities around political issues, current elections, and voter registration.

College facilities and funds may be used by political groups on campus so long as the use does not favor one political party over another. Student activities funds may not be used for direct political action, for disbursement to any organization that is not an officially recognized Dickinson College organization or contributed to a political campaign or other political fund or organization. Student organizations that use College facilities for political presentations must open such presentations to all members of the campus community. No campaign political rallies may be held on campus. For a fuller description of "Do's" and "Don'ts" of Political Campaign-Related Activities at Colleges and Universities, see the American Council of Education memorandum (September 2014) at http://www.acenet.edu/news-room/Documents/Memo-Political-Campaigns.pdf