Oberlin College seeks to prepare students to become engaged and informed citizens by providing essential information and resources to vote in local, state, and national elections.

Two students seated on a bus, holding up a voting guide for Lorain County.
Photo credit: Zoë Madonna ’15

Where Will You Vote This Fall?

If you will be in Oberlin:

If you will not be in Oberlin this fall:

  • I am registered to vote in Oberlin and want to vote in Oberlin by absentee ballot: Absentee Voting Instructions
  • If you are not yet a registered voter in Ohio, and will not be in Oberlin this fall, we encourage you to register and vote where you are: Polling Place by State
  • I want to vote absentee in my home state: Request a Ballot

How to Register and Vote in Ohio

Expect to vote in Ohio this year? October 5, 2020, is the deadline to register to vote in the November 3 general election. The Board of Elections must have your registration materials by the deadline.

Basic Registration Requirements

  • You must be a U.S. citizen over the age of 18 on November 3, 2020. 

  • You must register at the street address of your current residence hall/house/co-op. If you changed residence halls since you last registered, you need to re-register!

  • You need to know the last four digits of your Social Security number or current Ohio driver’s license number.

  • Submit your registration form by mail or to the Board of Elections as early as you can.


If submitting an absentee ballot application in order to vote by mail:

  • Your Ohio Driver License number or

  • The last 4 digits of your Social Security number

  • If you do not have your driver's license or Social Security number, please include one of the following with your application:

    • Current valid photo ID card
    • Military ID
    • Current (within one year) utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or government document (except Board of Elections notifications) showing your name and current address.

    Still unsure of how to register? Please watch this Obie-specific video with important how-tos on completing your Ohio voter registration form. This is designed for first-time Ohio voters.

    Watch the video

Voter Registration Deadlines

This year’s general election is November 3, 2020. To be sure of voter registration deadlines, it is best to check with your home state for any recent changes to election rules. Whether voting in Ohio, absentee, or by mail, be sure you are a registered voter by the designated registration deadline.


Absentee Ballot Instructions

Because of the ongoing pandemic, we encourage you to vote by mail using an absentee ballot, whether you are in Oberlin this fall or temporarily voting from home because of our revised calendar this year.

Remember that the combination of large numbers of expected voters and an unusually large number of mail-in ballots are likely to cause pressure on county boards of elections and the postal service.

Request your ballot early and return it without delay to ensure your vote is counted. 

Should you opt to vote in Oberlin and need the address of your residence hall, scroll through the facilities web page and search by name to locate your residence hall and contact information.

Registered to vote in Oberlin (Lorain County)? Follow these steps:

  • Confirm your registration and address at voterlookup.ohiosos.gov .
  • Go to the Ohio Secretary of State absentee ballot request website and fill out the form completely following the online directions.
  • Fill out your name and registration address as they appear in your voter record.
  • Check ‘‘Select this box to send your ballot to a different address. (If different from home address).’’
  • Fill out the address where you would like to receive your ballot. 
  • Provide one of the requested forms of ID. You do not need the college utility bill if you provide the last four digits of your Social Security number.
  • Once you have completed the information, download and print the application.
  • Sign and mail it with proper postage to:

    Lorain County Board of Elections
    1985 North Ridge Road, E
    Lorain, Ohio 44055

    Apply for Absentee Ballot