C-SPAN campaign bus parks on Great Lawn

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The University’s civic engagement program, PARTICIPATE, brought the C-SPAN 2012 Campaign Bus to the Great Lawn on Oct. 18 to help educate students about the upcoming elections and about the current political system.

According to Doug Hemmig, a community relations representative for C-SPAN, the bus travels across the country to universities, high schools and middle schools, educating people about what the station has to offer and the importance of being active participants in politics.

The bus was equipped with interactive kiosks and advanced technology, encouraging those who went on board to be informed about government and politics. Those who went into the bus were able to take quizzes on a variety of subjects and watch video clips covering the upcoming election.

Participants also took advantage of C-SPAN’s extensive online video library, C-SPAN Classroom and the Congressional Chronicle, a comprehensive resource about the United States Congress.

C-SPAN representatives on board the bus helped answer any questions students and faculty had about the network, its free resources, the 2012 presidential campaign and about the bus itself.

“We are here to showcase C-SPAN and what they do,” Hemmig said. “C-SPAN gives unfiltered access to our government. It is a great free primary resource.”

Sophomore Rabath Chowdhury said he decided to visit the bus because he recently became interested in politics, but was still unsure for whom he was going to vote.

“I am an undecided voter,” Chowdhury said. “I am here just getting more informed.”

Chowdhury said when he heard the bus was heading to campus, he thought it was a perfect opportunity for him to help educate himself further on the subject of the election. Chowdhury said he was also excited to see the bus because he watches C-SPAN programming.

C-SPAN started in 1979 and receives no government funding. According to the C-SPAN video library online website, all programming aired since 1987 is digital and can be viewed on its website for free. The online library covers everything from past congressional sessions to presidential debates, totaling almost 200,000 hours of footage overall.

According to its website, C-SPAN provides this free public service for education, research, review and home viewing purposes.