Bridgewater College Associate Professor of Political Science Dr. Bobbi Gentry Awarded Two Grants to Enhance Voter Education and Participation

Bobbi Gentry

Dr. Bobbi Gentry, Associate Professor of Political Science at Bridgewater College, is the recipient of two different grants to strengthen voter education and participation.

The first is a $20,000 grant from the Scholars Strategy Network, a nonprofit organization using research to inform public policy. The grant fully funds The Valley Votes Project and includes a website and speaker series of six events, the first of which will be “The Valley Votes Securely” on Thursday, Sept. 8, at 6 p.m. at the Lucy Simms Continuing Education Center Auditorium in Harrisonburg, Va. The free event will have speakers from a variety of backgrounds discussing how elections are secured in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia and the U.S.

“The purpose of this grant is to rebuild trust in elections in our communities. The Valley Votes Project provides voter registration and voter education to improve the public’s understanding of the electoral system. Voting in the Valley matters,” Gentry said.

The hope of Dr. Gentry and Assistant Professor of Psychology at James Madison University Dr. Benjamin Blankenship, co-recipient of the grant from SSN, is to work to build trust in elections and improve confidence in elections locally by providing non-partisan education events.

In addition, Dr. Gentry received a grant from Campus Takeover in support of celebrating civic holidays. Civic holidays, as defined by Campus Takeover, are nonpartisan days of action that strengthen and celebrate democracy by bringing together a wide range of organizations and communities in pursuit of an America where everyone participates and votes.

Dr. Gentry received a B.A. in political science and a B.A. in psychology from Winthrop University and a master of philosophy and Ph.D. in political science from City University of New York. Her areas of specialization and research include youth voting behavior, identity development, and teaching and learning in political science.

Members of the media may email to coordinate an interview with Dr. Gentry.