View from the Hill: WKU students play vital role in Census 2020
- WKU News
- Thursday, April 9th, 2020
With the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the country, U.S. Census officials say there’s never been a better time to get an accurate census count.
WKU’s Amy Bingham looks at the vital role WKU plays in the census in this week’s View from the Hill.
“Campus may be mostly empty these days because of COVID-19, but that doesn’t mean efforts aren’t continuing to make sure every WKU student is counted as living in Bowling Green for the 2020 Census.”
“What is the 2020 Census?”
Mandated by the Constitution, the U.S. Census Bureau counts every single person, even college students, every 10 years to determine the allocation of billions of dollars.
“It’s been very much an educational campaign to try to teach students what a census is, why it’s a good idea to participate.”
Last fall, Lana Kunkel with Housing and Residence Life was asked to lead a Census Committee that would launch an educational campaign for students living both on and off campus.
“The majority of our planning focused on the off campus students. Those in rental apartments, those in rental houses, those in sorority and fraternity houses.”
Their big push was planned for the week after WKU’s spring break, which was the week everything drastically changed.
“We came back from spring break and had that delayed spring break and not to mention I couldn’t do this role that week, in my role in housing I had to prepare to close the residence halls.”
With everyone scattered, Kunkel says it’s important for students to remember they still should be counted as living in Bowling Green.
“Hopefully students did tell their families that they will be counted at Bowling Green and that’s how the Census has instructed us to do.”
Kunkel has until May 2 to submit numbers for students who lived on WKU’s campus this year, but for off-campus students who have gone back home, she has a message.
“Get online, get that completed, it’s only going to help our community in so many different ways so please take the time to go ahead and get that done.”
2020 Census officials say their partnership with WKU and its student count strategy is a national model and should be a great source of pride.
- More: WKU Census page