The C-SPAN Campaign 2016 Bus stopped at The University Friday to teach students about the election process and help them learn about the presidential candidates from an objective media outlet.
The bus parked outside the Commons near the Weinberg Memorial Library and invited students inside to learn about politics. Students boarded the bus to see numerous touch screen monitors with different interactive quizzes, websites and political maps that showed how the presidential election may play out.
The monitors, high definition televisions, touch screen computers and mobile devices also showed how focused C-SPAN is in public affairs coverage. The bus was able to show all passengers political videos that dated back to 1987.
Vanessa Torres is a C-SPAN marketing representative who spoke about the importance of the bus tours across college campuses.
“A lot of students are very excited to learn about the campaign,” Torres said. “Many have said this is definitely a unique election, and a lot of students are really trying to learn more about their candidates, from Republican to Democrat to Libertarian and Green party. Our mission is to really showcase all of the candidates and to cover them as much as we can.”
Many of the students that will vote in the presidential election are first-time voters. This being said, there is a huge opportunity for young voters to be educated on the voting process and how everything in government elections really functions.
“The one thing we want students to take away from these visits is that C-SPAN is a nonpartisan network and we are not government funded. It’s a great way for students to learn about and get more information on their government. They’re able to come to C-SPAN whenever they need it,” Torres said.
Some students are also benefiting from the visit. Students watched as both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump announced their candidacy for president early in 2015 and have been listening and learning ever since. Kayla Johnson, a junior strategic communication major, said that she believes everyone needs to be educated on politics.
“Whether or not you follow politics, it’s important to know about the campaign and the topics involved, and the C-SPAN bus did just that. It was informative and useful, especially in regards to this current presidential election,” Johnson said.
Others were focused on how important a visit from the bus was. Sophomore Brion Harris gave his input on why it is so important for students to learn about the presidential candidates from non-partisan sources.
“I think it is important to learn from non-partisan sources because it gives students an outside perspective that is not based on pure emotion, but from people who don’t have an involvement that want to give the honest facts on the policy that is being said. I think that people just need to care and want to be engaged before anyone else,” Harris said.