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Getting Alaskans on The College Track

UAS hosted the premiere of Alaska College Track 2 on Oct. 17th, the night before it aired on statewide television on Alaska One.

The showing was followed by an open discussion about the transition from high school to college, with panelists UAS Chancellor John Pugh, Juneau Douglas High School Counselor Frank Coenraad, UAS Director of Admission Joe Nelson, and UAS student and documentary subject Amanda Bremner.  

The panel discussion will air in combination with the documentary on 360 North several times over the next few months.

The Alaska College Track series began in 2004 as a local companion to a national PBS College Track series, which explored equal access issues in the American educational system on the 50th anniversary of the landmark BROWN v. BOARD OF EDUCATION decision. The local version was told through the viewpoint of first-generation college students from Yakutat, Craig, and Hydaburg as they made their transitions from villages to college campuses.

 Alaska College Track 2 reacquaints viewers with the students from the original series. It shares how one student used the heartbreaking loss of her brother to reassess her goals and get back on the college track. The documentary takes viewers from UA campuses in Juneau, Anchorage, and Fairbanks to show how cultural identity and traditions are helping rural students stay in school. The documentary raises issues such as the High School Qualifying Exam, cultural differences, and the expectation gap between high schools and post-secondary educators.

Alaska College Track 2 is a KTOO-TV production. Katie Bausler served as Writer and Producer with UAS’s Kevin Myers working as Associate Producer. Funding came from First National Bank Alaska, and the University of Alaska Foundation using funds provided by BP/ConocoPhillips.        

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