Gearing up for this summer’s Democratic National Convention, UWM’s University Relations and Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership, and Research hosted volunteer information sessions last week to encourage widespread involvement in the convention and precursory events.
The Milwaukee 2020 Host Committee has taken on the national responsibility of organizing and funding the convention, which will be held in July. The committee is looking for 15,000 community volunteers to represent the city during this historic event.
During two sessions on campus, Tony Snell from the Milwaukee 2020 Host Committee presented a series of avenues for people interested in volunteering.
Opportunities include event, administrative, technological and logistical support as well as positions in sustainability, hospitality, social media, press and communications, transportation and leadership.
“We’re here to help Milwaukee put its best foot forward,” Snell said. “We’ll showcase what’s best about our distinctive neighborhoods, incredible diversity, rich history, universities and hardworking and talented people.”
The committee is looking to emphasize diversity in the convention by including Asian, African American, Latinx, women’s groups and faith-based communities.
“We want to be very intentional as an organization to engage a diverse group of people, so that when people look at the convention, they see themselves,” Snell said.
Milwaukee will be the first Midwestern city other than Chicago to host a Democratic national convention in the last 100 years.
The committee is aiming to recruit 18,000 people registered as potential volunteers. So far, 10,000 have already expressed interest.
People interested are required to register on the volunteer portal, which is active now and will be rolling out positions in spring. Volunteers will be matched with an appropriate position and may be required to take training or orientation courses closer to the convention.
With an estimated 50,000 visitors for the convention and a $200 million impact, volunteers will act as ambassadors for the city and will work to create “a lasting legacy,” according to Snell.
Other academic opportunities for UWM students to be involved in the DNC include a summer course, internship or scholarship through the Department of Political Science.