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Election Academy Backgrounder

The Election Academy is an 8-week long academic program designed to teach participants about elections in Orange County, California. 

The Election Academy is a first-of-a-kind in the elections industry. 

The Election Academy is open to the public, and will be particularly beneficial to those individuals with an interest in voting, running for office, and the election process.

Encompassing all election management functions of the department, a series of highly relevant, hand-on sessions galvanize the participants understanding of election operations. 

As a result of completing the Election Academy courses the participant will have a greater perspective on the mechanics of how ballots are produced, counted and certified. 

No more than 40 participants will be accepted into the program at a given time. Participants who are not accepted are welcome to apply for future Election Academy programs.

Those interested in applying for the Election Academy must fill out and submit a completed application form. This can either be done online at or mailed ATTN: Election Academy/1300 South Grand Avenue, Building C/Santa Ana, CA 92705. (Applications are available at the address listed above.) 


All classes will take place at the Orange County Registrar of Voters office located at 1300 South Grand Avenue, Building C/Santa Ana, CA.

There is no cost to attend the Election Academy. It is a complimentary program provided by the Registrar of Voters. 

Students will learn the fundamentals of candidate filing, candidate statements, and ballot designation rules and regulations. 

They will also learn about campaign finance, including filing requirements, deadlines, and legal regulations. 

The participants will be walked through the process of building a ballot including learning about ballot types, random draw, rotations, translations, recording and producing the audio ballot and the development of the sample ballot. 

The third class will cover connecting with voters. It will feature a media panel of reporters, bloggers, former candidates and consultants who will discuss media coverage surrounding elections. 

Students will gain an understanding of the voter registration process, vote-by-mail voting, poll worker recruitment, outreach and recruiting polling places. Election Day operations will also be covered including the Registrar of Voters Rapid Deployment Team, phone banks and voter contact. 

The last two courses will cover results and certification. Participants will learn about ballot security, closing a polling place, handling voting equipment and supplies and processing ballots. Also covered will be provisional ballots, state mandated audits and regulations, the recount process and more.