Campaign season is nearing its peak.
Candidates are traveling across the country and negative ads are being broadcasted on all media outlets. President Obama isn’t missing a beat; he is campaigning across the country and stressing the youth vote along the way.
For many college students, this will be the first election season where they can vote. With that in mind, Obama is voicing his thoughts on youth voters.
“I see the kind of changes that you’ve been able to bring about," Obama said of collegiate voters. "You made a difference in the election four years ago, and as a consequence, you made a difference in the life of your country.”
During the call, Obama outlined reforms that occurred thanks to the votes of the youth whiparticipated in the last election.
He mentioned the college tax credit that saved families up to $10,000 on their tuition for over four years, the doubling of grant aid for millions of students, and the low student loan rates. He went on to add health care reform as well as changes in renewable energy.
“It’s because of you,” Obama said.
Those four words resonated throughout the conversation as he placed emphasis on the importance of the youth vote, which is an area that, according to Obama, Romney is not encouraging.
Obama has extended his campaign to social media where he is gaining several youth followers. He currently has 18.5 million followers on Twitter compared to Romney’s 850,000 followers. He has also gained 27.1 million likes on Facebook compared to Romney’s 4.1 million and trumped the YouTube stage, which was all part of his $25 million advertising campaign.
“They’re hoping that young people, even if they don’t vote for them, at least don’t vote at all," Obama said. "My main message to all of you is I’m expecting something different.”
The lack of concentration on youth voters is not the only concern Obama has with his opponent.
In regards to the GOP convention currently taking place in Tampa, Obama expressed his thoughts on Romney’s platform.
“The other side is making their sales pitch and they’ll put on a pretty entertaining show, but what they’re not doing is offering a serious path forward,” Obama said.
One of the main issues related to college students Obama has expressed concern for is that of college grad employment. A recent study by Rutgers University showed roughly half of college graduates are working full time after graduation.
“Young people (need to) have greater awareness of where the new jobs are going to be. There’s a mismatch in terms of skills," Obama said. "We need more engineers, more folks working in the health care field.”
Obama encouraged students take advantage of opportunities in specialized training in their universities.
Programs have been placed in community colleges to partner with businesses to assist students in specializing in their areas. In the future, Obama would like to partner universities with businesses to collaborate in research.
Regardless of the situation, Obama emphasized the unemployment rate is double without a college degree, so a college education is still important.
The unemployment rate in Virginia is currently lower than other states. As of July 2012 the unemployment rate for Virginia is 5.9 percent, where as Nevada is at 12 percent; the national average is 8.3 percent.
In regards to the outcome, he expects Virginia to be very close. In 2008, he was the first democrat in 44 years to win the state.
The 2012 election has already presented several differences from 2008. In 2008, 66 percent of Obama’s supporters aged from 18-29, where as today that number has dropped to 61 percent.
“Frankly, the choice you guys face couldn’t be bigger or more consequential,” Obama said.