OK, quick ... name the 44 presidents of the United States —  in order.

Can’t do it? How about reciting the preamble to the Constitution?

OK, pass on that one, too? Well, answer this, Who takes over as president if the president and vice president are both killed or disabled?

We know, sometimes being an informed citizen takes some work. That’s why we have to start early.

Making sure the next generation is informed about the mundane and the must-knows is critical — especially since someday, they will make decisions that affect us.

But luckily, in Mercer County, high school students will have the chance to see the political process up close and personal.

Students have a chance to volunteer to assist at the polls on Election Day, Nov. 8. 

Jeff Greenburg, Mercer County director of elections, said that once again he is recruiting high school students who will be age 17 or older as of Nov. 8. 

The volunteer program was started a few years ago and has proven successful. Students who participated have made very positive comments about the experience.

And, hopefully, they took one step closer to being informed future voters.

The students are required to attend a training session two weeks before the election. Because they aren’t paid, they are not required to work a full day if they choose a shorter period of service.

And we say, the more the merrier.

Teachers and school administrators should promote this program for their students. Many of these teens will soon be eligible to vote. Nothing leads to registering to vote at a young age like taking part in community service on general election day — especially during a presidential election when voting numbers are up.

Goodness knows we could sure use some more informed voters.

And there is another positive, too. Many high schools today require some sort of public service for seniors, so what better way to fulfill part of that requirement than to work the polls?

Greenburg asks that school officials contact him no later than Oct. 17 at 724-662-7542 or jgreenburg@mcc.co.mercer.pa.us to receive instructions on signing up students. Any student interested in participating should talk to his or her school’s officials about the possibility rather than contacting his office. 

Homeschooled students are also eligible and should call the Mercer County elections office.

It is stunning how many young people — and some older people, too — do not have even basic knowledge of their government or how elections work.

We need to change that — and this is one way to make sure that if someone from this area is stopped for one of those infamous man-on-the street quizzes, they will be one step closer to having the right answers. 

And we have one more suggestion, since it never hurts to ask. Perhaps government teachers will give extra credit to volunteers it they share their experiences with the rest of the students. 

We would vote for that.

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