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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Maryland chapter.

Maya Gujral is a junior at the University of Maryland. Originally from Maplewood, New Jersey, in August, Gujral became a Maryland resident.

Having changed her major to information science late in her sophomore year, Gujral now finds herself needing at least an extra semester of college after her initial four years.

Gujral’s additional semesters will take place in 2020, the same time the U.S. Census is being conducted.

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When asked if Gujral will be registering for the census, she replied with a simple, “Yeah.” Gujral added, “I think our current census is outdated with how rapidly our country’s population is changing, so it’s important to be correct and this census is trying to actually do that for once.”

The College Park City Council unanimously approved of a resolution that would establish a Complete Count Committee for the 2020 census.

The focus of this 10-member committee is to develop outreach programs with the hope of raising response rates in hard-to-count populations. These populations include people experiencing homelessness, college students, and households where English is not the main language.

The census data is used to determine how many seats states receive in the U.S. House of Representatives. Additionally, the data is used to allocate funding for areas including education, public health, and transportation.


Community Development Planner, Kacy Rohn, proposed this resolution. Rohn said, “The census count has a lot of ramifications for redistricting, for federal dollars. It’s very important to the city. I’m hoping that we can work much more closely with the university this time around to reach the student population and to reach these other groups.”

Councilmember, Robert W. Day said, “I think 10 is a rather small number.” Day added, “That count is something we have to be very, very progressive in getting correct.” To ensure accuracy and maximize outreach, the city council members expressed interest in the creation of subcommittees.

According to the resolution, college students would be one of the targets of these committees. College students are eligible to register for the census based on “Usual Residence.” The U.S. Census Bureau defines this as “the place where a person lives and sleeps most of the time. This place is not necessarily the same as the person’s voting residence or legal residence.”

The resolution states the council should appoint members to the committee by the end of this year, so the committee can begin its work in 2019. This committee would disband after the 2020 census is conducted.


Bethie Loewenthal is a junior at the University of Maryland majoring in Journalism. Loewenthal is interested in social justice and gender equality.
Ambriah Underwood is an avid reader and writer. In 2016, she graduated from Baltimore City College high school becoming an International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme recipient. She attends the University of Maryland as a senior, pursuing a degree in journalism with a minor in Spanish. During the spring of 2018, she copyedited news, opinion and diversion sections for an on-campus, student-run publication known as The Diamondback. After spending a year writing for Her Campus Maryland, and, later, functioning as an editor as well, she became co-Campus Correspondent. She plans to further her involvement with the group as well as gain more editorial experience through internships and by continuing her passion for storytelling. Ambriah Underwood resides in Washington County, Maryland.