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‘In-your-face experience:’ C-SPAN bus helps get students interested in 2020 election

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Kaiden Brown

MILWAUKEE -- Students across Milwaukee got an inside look at covering politics, with C-SPAN’s bus visiting Milwaukee and the surrounding areas Sept. 23-24 to engage students, teachers, community members, and elected officials.

"It's nice to get out of class to come see a bus like this," said Kaiden Brown, eighth-grader, who visited the bus Monday, Sept. 23.

The stop in the Badger State by the state-of-the-art, 45-foot customized mobile classroom and production studio was part of a seven-week tour of 10 states, including some battleground states expected to play a pivotal role in the 2020 presidential election.

Through interactive kiosks and demonstrations aboard the bus, visitors were able to learn about C-SPAN's coverage of the American political process, campaign 2020 programming, and online educational resources, including

"Just kind of a really overwhelming, in-your-face experience," said Brown.

Visitors were also able to share their thoughts on issues they want presidential candidates to address during the campaign, as part of the "Voices from the Road" project.

"So they can make up their own minds, and at a very young age, start practicing how to make decisions and conclusions on what they're seeing," said Ivette Lucero, C-SPAN marketing rep. "Young students are definitely participating more in politics. They're more interested in politics. They want to know what's happening."

While Brown won't be old enough to vote in 2020 -- he said it's important to start thinking about the issues from a young age.

"A lot of people think their one vote won't really matter, but little do they know that every vote does really count," said Brown.

During the Battleground States Tour, officials said students and educators wouldlearn about C-SPAN's national documentary competition, StudentCam. Awarding $100,000 in prize money annually, the competition challenges students to produce a five- to six-minute documentary using C-SPAN video to explore a local or national issue of importance.

With the theme being, "What's Your Vision in 2020?" students were asked to explore the issue they most want presidential candidates to address during the campaign.

The website includes an extensive video library containing over 252,000 hours of searchable content for viewing, research, and education purposes.

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