SHU Students Share Political Views in WWE Interviews

News Story: October 5, 2008

Sacred Heart University students’ political views will be broadcast across the world in the run-up to this year’s historic presidential election.

World Wrestling Entertainment, the multi-media sports-entertainment corporation based in Stamford, was on campus on Thursday, Sept. 18 to interview 20 students of differing political views regarding their perspectives about the election, candidates, and the issues facing young voters as part of the Cable in the Classroom program.

“We came to Sacred Heart to interview a series of students — Republicans and Democrats — who could talk to us about the issues that are part of the [Cable in the Classroom] curriculum,” said Gary Davis, vice president of corporate communications at WWE. “The students were very articulate and had some great opinions to share which we think will be invaluable as teachers use these videos as thought starters for discussion in their classrooms.”

The program’s goal is to use the combined media power of WWE and Cable in the Classroom to highlight issues of importance to young adults and teenagers. The students were interviewed on a range of 10 topics that are framed within the context of Cable in the Classroom’s eLECTIONS game. eLECTIONS is a politically-themed take on the Game of Life delivered over a broadband network.

The topics are diverse and include healthcare, economics, the environment, immigration, campaign finance reform, education, defense, affirmative action, taxes, and national security.

WWE and Cable in the Classroom viewers will broadcast students’ views about these issues and which of the candidates they feel can best address their concerns. WWE stars will introduce each vignette. The videos will also be available on Cable in the Classroom’s Web site and will be available to cable companies for wider distribution.

The questions asked of students are broad and touch on many of the core issues facing the nation today. WWE asked between two and four questions on each topic. On defense: “Do you support an increase in spending on defense to support a larger, more modern military that can help defeat terrorists, deter adversaries, and defend the U.S. and our interests?”

The questions are very timely, given the turmoil in geopolitics and world financial markets. On the economy: “With the U.S. economy now a major concern for many voters in the upcoming election, do you think the government should adopt measures to slow down the flow of U.S. jobs to other countries? Do you think the government should get involved to help families whose homes are threatened by foreclosure? Do you think the government should get involved to help companies and banks that are in trouble?”

On healthcare: “Are health care costs and/or medical insurance a concern for you and your family? Do you support government-run, universal health care? Or, do you support market-oriented health care solutions?”

The vignettes will be available in early October.