The 2020 Census counts every person living in the 50 states, District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories. Each home will receive an invitation to respond to a short questionnaire—online, by phone, or by mail. If your RIT student is out of the house, you may have some questions on how to respond to the Census. The following information can help you not only fill out your own Census, but guide your student with theirs.
Students should be counted where they live while at college. Even if your student’s permanent address is yours, they need to be counted here (in Henrietta, Rochester, or wherever they live near campus). The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for you and your community. Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding go to hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources based on census data. College students should be counted based on where they live for the majority of the year, which is here! As a parent, you should not be counting your student as living with you if they are living at RIT or in their own housing.
Where your student lives matters to how they fill out the Census. Here is information based on specific student types for you to use in guiding your student on how to complete the Census. Please keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and you should follow the instructions in the questionnaire that you receive.
- My student lives in RIT housing: Students living in RIT housing (including residence halls, on-campus apartments, and the RIT Inn) don’t have to do anything for the Census. RIT provides group reporting to students in our facilities.
- My student rents an apartment/house in the Henrietta/Rochester area: These students will have to fill out the Census. In March, they will receive an invitation in the mail inviting them to fill out the 2020 Census online. If not completed online, they will continue to receive reminders and eventually a paper questionnaire. Starting in the summer, Census Takers will visit homes that have not yet filled out the Census. Your student will have to work with their roommate(s) to fill out one Census for the household. Please encourage your student to complete the Census as soon as possible and before they leave for the summer.
- My student lives at home with me: In this case, you should count your student in your household Census.
- My student is an international student: International students should also fill out the Census! Please share this information with your student, including the link below, so they understand why it is important for international students to complete the Census.
Job opportunities. If your student is looking for some extra income this summer, there are job opportunities working as a Census taker. More information is available on the 2020 Census Jobs website.
For more information about what to expect with the Census, please refer your student to www.2020census.gov