Mark Metcalf

New Voters Series, Part One

Many young people will cast their first votes for president this year, and today begins Mark Metcalf's series interviewing new voters. Today's guest, Alyssa Swan, will cast her first vote while studying abroad in Tasmania, Australia.

By - Oct 23rd, 2012 02:30 pm

In case you’ve been living under a rock or are criminally apathetic, you’re aware that election day is right around the corner. Early voting and in-person absentee ballot voting has already begun.

Many young people will be voting in their first presidential election this year. 11,500 Americans turn 18 every day. It’s a big voting block and an important one, and I wanted to find out what some of these brand new voters thought about being able to participate in the democratic process for the first time.

Tasmania is located off the southeast coast of Australia. The island has been an Australian state since 1901.

To begin this series, I talked with Alyssa Swan, a Nicolet High School graduate who goes to college at Iowa State University. This semester, Alyssa is studying abroad in the city of Hobart in Tasmania, Australia, and I was able to talk to her through the magic of Skype. She will cast her first vote in a U.S. presidential election from 10,000 miles away.

Like many students studying abroad or members of the armed forces who are serving overseas, her vote will be cast by absentee ballot. Information on absentee voting for U.S. residents who currently reside outside the country can be found at Travel.State.Gov, or at the Federal Voting Assistance Program, at

Listen now:

Introduction: [audio:|titles=Backstage with Mark Metcalf: Introducting the New Voters Series]

Interview: [audio:|titles=Backstage with Mark Metcalf – Alyssa Swan]

Subscribe to these podcasts on iTunes here.

Check back for more in this series in the coming days and weeks for podcasts featuring interviews with students from Milwaukee High School of the Arts, Wauwatosa East High School and Rufus King High School.

Backstage with Mark Metcalf,” a 2011 Milwaukee Press Club award-winner, is engineered and produced by Dan ShaferFor the full archive of these podcasts, check out TCD’s Podcasts Page.

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