Campus census booths to assist and recruit students

Student Board of Governors voted in favor of having census centers in Coffman Union to provide help students fill out census questionnaires

by Andrea Schug

Regional Census Center employees will begin sitting in booths at Coffman Union and in the St. Paul Student Center on March 19 to ensure University of Minnesota students will be counted in the 2010 Census. On Thursday March 4, the student Board of Governors voted in favor of providing a free booth in Coffman to the Census Center so that students could utilize their help and services. âÄúNot only is it important to provide students with help but we wanted to do our part in making sure students get counted,âÄù said Kenny Kapphahn, political science senior and president of the Board of Governors. The Census BureauâÄôs rules state that the organization is not allowed to pay for space in a public location, Kapphahn said. Instead, the space must be donated. âÄúWe wanted to allow the centers to be here because itâÄôs a good cause,âÄù Joel Livingood, sophomore management major and member of Board of Governors, said. The census booths will be in operation from March 19 to April 19 and will be open for 15 hours each week. Bill Davnie, Minneapolis local census office manager , said that their office appreciates the UniversityâÄôs help in spreading the word about the 2010 Census. âÄúTheyâÄôve been supportive and cooperative to get the news out to students,âÄù Davnie said. âÄúBesides advertising, itâÄôs especially helpful that weâÄôll have a center right on campus.âÄù National Census Day will be on April 1 but residents of houses and apartments can expect census questionnaires to start arriving Monday. All students who are not living with their parents during the school year should fill out their own census, Davnie said. On April 1, census employees will deliver a stack of questionnaires to community advisors in each dorm for distribution and employees will pick them up the following day, Davnie said. âÄúStudent areas are always a focus,âÄù Davnie said. âÄúThese people are smart and understand whatâÄôs going on but itâÄôs also hard for them to remember that this is something to worry about.âÄù Students who do not fill out their questionnaires will receive a visit from a census worker reminding them to fill out their form, Davnie said. âÄúWe are trying to remind people that this is something thatâÄôs quick, itâÄôs easy, itâÄôs safe and itâÄôs important,âÄù Davnie said. Employees working the booth will not only be helping students but will also be recruiting students to work for the local census office. âÄúWe are working around that area to get students to take the exam necessary to get into our pool of potential employees,âÄù Davnie said. Students looking for a job will be hired for the months of May, June and July .