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PBS series on Texas education challenges previews in March

By Tim Brownlee
Assistant Director of Public Affairs

(March 19, 2007)--A new PBS documentary series on public higher education challenges and solutions, "State of Tomorrow," is previewing this month on PBS stations in San Antonio, Austin, College Station, El Paso and Waco, according to Randa Safady, series executive producer and UT System vice chancellor for external relations.

Four episodes of the series are airing in these cities before the full 13-episode launch in April, when all Texas PBS stations will carry the series. The robotic swarms of Mo Jamshidi, UTSA professor of electrical engineering, and his graduate students are featured in the series. Read more in a previous UTSA Today story.

"State of Tomorrow" includes 13 episodes that examine how public higher education innovators are pursuing solutions to Texas' biggest challenges in public health, homeland security, energy policy, economic development, environmental quality and education. The series highlights new research in bio-safety, nanotechnology, and proton therapy through thought-provoking interviews and visuals.

The series represents an unprecedented collaboration of a documentary production company, public television and public higher education institutions including UT System institutions, Texas A&M, Texas State, Texas Tech, University of Houston and University of North Texas.

Through the personal stories of cancer patients, hurricane survivors, farmers and teachers, and interviews with researchers, scientists and doctors, the series depicts global issues and solutions on a human scale.

"The University of Texas System is so proud to be part of this important series," said UT System Chancellor Mark G. Yudof. "Public higher education offers solutions to many of the major challenges facing Texas, and it is important for Texans to know that whether or not they ever set foot on our campuses, we work to ensure that they are the beneficiaries of education's service to society."

The series is co-produced by the University of Texas Foundation and Alpheus Media Inc. in partnership with public television station KLRU-TV, Austin, and is funded by sponsors including AT&T Inc., Exxon Mobil Corp., and IBC Bank, among others.

The University of Texas Foundation is a nonprofit corporation established in 1967 to accept and manage gifts in support of the UT System and its institutions. Alpheus Media Inc. is an independent film production company based in Austin, Texas, whose work has aired on PBS and the Discovery Channel.

For more information, visit the "State of Tomorrow" Web site.

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