Trustees | General Education

George Mason students can’t identify Ronald Reagan, but recognize Kim Kardashian

WASHINGTON TIMES   |  February 18, 2016 by Jessica Chasmar

A new video shows “politically challenged” students at George Mason University struggling to identify the photographs of former President Ronald Reagan and Vice President Joseph Biden.

“Was that a former president?” a student majoring in government and international politics asked when shown a picture of Reagan in the Oval Office. “Was that Nixon, maybe?”

Another student guessed Bill Clinton.

“A politician of sorts,” one student said.

“Dude, I feel like I know him,” said another.

Texas Tech University’s nonpartisan political organization PoliTech and the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, a nonprofit organization that promotes civic education at America’s colleges and universities, conducted the survey at the Fairfax, Virginia, college, The Daily Signal reported.

Students interviewed in the video didn’t have better luck in identifying Mr. Biden.

“I don’t recognize who that is,” one student said.

“John McCain?” asked another.

The same students had no trouble identifying a photo of reality TV star Kim Kardashian.

A recently released survey revealed that nearly 10 percent of college graduates believe popular TV star Judith Sheindlin, aka “Judge Judy,” serves on the Supreme Court of the United States. The report also found that 47 percent of graduates also couldn’t identify the term lengths for members of Congress, and nearly 40 percent didn’t know that Congress has the power to declare war.

The poll, conducted by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, a D.C.-based nonprofit, concluded that college graduates “are alarmingly ignorant of America’s history and heritage.”


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