The C-SPAN (Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network) Campaign Bus stopped by Christopher Newport University on Wednesday, Sept. 26. The campaign bus is currently on its “Road to the White House” tour and the members of C-SPAN hope to educate communities all over the U.S. about government and public affairs.
Jennifer Curran, a marketing representative with C-SPAN, said, “The overall goal is education and community outreach. We really try to get in touch with students and let them know they can use C-SPAN for all of their classwork needs, primary courses and also to learn more about the government and public affairs.”
The bus is filled with computers, touch screens, smartphones of all kinds and even tablet PCs.
“This is our multimedia demonstration center, so inside there are four touchscreen kiosks that allow you to browse our website and our video library and do trivia for fun.”
The bus also features laptops so members of the community can connect to C-SPAN via Twitter, Facebook or YouTube.
“We also have our mobile apps area so you can see the C-SPAN radio app. We have a SMART Board in the back for classroom purposes, which allows us to break down the ways that students can access and best utilize C-SPAN resources,” said Curran.
The bus travels nationwide and is on the road 10 months of the year.
“Right now, we’re on our ‘Road to the White House’ tour, so we began in Iowa with the caucus and we traveled to the New Hampshire primary, then on down to South Carolina for their primary as well as Florida.”
When America is not in the heat of a political election, the C-SPAN Bus attends various community events nationwide.
“It’s really just looking for campaign-related events, but in between we have anchor events like book festivals that allow us to work with our cable partners, so middle schools and high schools too. It’s not just schools. We’ll go to state capitals, city halls, rotary club meetings and libraries too.” said Curran.
The idea of a traveling bus was inspired by historian and author of “The Majic Bus,” Douglas Brinkley. The book inspired C-SPAN founder Brian Lamb of an idea that that a bus can be used in the community for educational purposes.
“We partner with Cox Communications here in Newport News and since we have such a close partnership with the cable industry, we thought the best way to go to the communities is to let people know that it’s a public service of the cable industry,” said Curran.