"American Graduate Day 2013," Live National Multiplatform Event to Keep Students on the Path to Graduation, Returns September 28 on Public Media

Featuring local and national programming, community partners, and celebrities focused on solutions to the nation's high school dropout crisis

Second annual full-day multiplatform event live from the Tisch WNET Studios at Lincoln Center in New York City

Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, City Year, Horizons National, and United Way are among 30 community partners to participate

NEW YORK, Aug. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For the second year in a row, American Graduate Day 2013, will premiere live this fall, Saturday, September 28 from 12 noon - 7 pm EST, on public media (check local public television station listings), marking a long term commitment to helping communities tackle the nation's dropout crisis and preparing students for success with a high school diploma. Through the power and reach of public media, communities across the county will be invited to take an active role and become an "American Graduate Champion" for local youth by volunteering their time, talent, or other resources. 

American Graduate Day 2013 will once again be broadcast and streamed live from the Tisch WNET Studios at Lincoln Center in New York City. American Graduate Day is part of the public media initiative, American Graduate: Let's Make It Happen, made possible by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

"American Graduate through America's public media stations, on air, online and in hundreds of communities is working in partnership with teachers, students, educators, business and community leaders to encourage, in measurable ways, our kids to stay on the path to a high school diploma," said Pat Harrison, CPB president and CEO. "Together with our 1000 local and national partners, we are having an impact and moving toward the national goal of a 90 percent graduation rate by the year 2020. American Graduate Day is just one example of how local public television and radio stations provide content that matters and engagement that counts."

Last September marked the first annual broadcast of American Graduate Day, a multi-platform event featuring local and national programming, community partners, and celebrities focused on improving the high school graduation rates in America. The key component of the event is the participation of the community-based organizations. Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, City Year, Horizons National, and United Way are among the partner organizations that have already agreed to participate in American Graduate Day 2013, which will feature nearly 30 national partner organizations, 14 local organizations, and celebrity guests involved in education and youth intervention programs. 

"THIRTEEN is proud to once again be the producer of American Graduate Day," says Neal Shapiro, president and CEO of WNET, home to public television's THIRTEEN, WLIW21 and NJTV.  "Creating innovative, inspiring, and informative content that makes an impact in our community and across the country is at the heart of what we do.  Using the power and reach of public media, we can make a difference and find solutions to combat the nation's dropout crisis."

American Graduate Day 2013 employs the same television broadcast format as last fall with a seven-hour "call to action" marathon around critical themes, including Expanded Learning Time & After School Programs, Early Education, Mentoring, Career Readiness & College Completion, STEM Programs, Family Support, and Dropout Re-engagement & Prevention. Hosted by on-air personalities from PBS, WNET, and other media organizations, the broadcast and online event will be divided into 14 half-hour blocks featuring a mix of live breaks and pre-taped partner segments showing how community organizations provide support, advice, and intervention services to at-risk students, families, and schools. Within each of these half-hour blocks, local public media stations broadcasts will have the opportunity to customize the national feed with a locally-produced live or pre-taped seven-minute segment. 

On AmericanGraduate.org, the event will include live viewer generated video content submitted in response to questions such as "How has your life changed, or been changed by the power of volunteering?"

Throughout the day, viewers and online users will be invited to become American Graduate Champions by connecting with their local public television stations and the featured local community organizations. Viewers will be encouraged to participate in the event by asking questions and sharing ideas before and during the broadcast on Twitter using the hashtag #AmGrad and on Facebook. Those interested in becoming an "American Graduate Champion" can also call the Toll free number on the day of broadcast or log on to AmericanGraduate.org to find out more about the national and regional organizations and how to help in their hometowns.

Visit the American Graduate Day Web site for more details on participating PBS and NPR stations as well as other television and radio programs: http://americangraduate.org/grad-day.

About WNET
In 2013, WNET is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of THIRTEEN, New York's flagship public media provider. As the parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to over 5 million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, Need to Know, Charlie Rose and a range of documentaries, children's programs, and local news and cultural offerings available on air and online. Pioneers in educational programming, WNET has created such groundbreaking series as Get the Math, Oh Noah! and Cyberchase and provides tools for educators that bring compelling content to life in the classroom and at home. WNET highlights the tri-state's unique culture and diverse communities through NYC-ARTS, Reel 13, NJ Today and MetroFocus, the multi-platform news magazine focusing on the New York region. WNET is also a leader in connecting with viewers on emerging platforms, including the THIRTEEN Explore iPad App where users can stream PBS content for free.

About AMERICAN GRADUATE
American Graduate: Let's Make it Happen is helping local communities identify and implement solutions to the high school dropout crisis. American Graduate demonstrates public media's commitment to education and its deep roots in every community it serves. Beyond providing programming that educates, informs and inspires, public radio and television stations — locally owned and operated — are an important resource in helping to address critical issues, such as the dropout rate. In addition to national programming, more than 75 public radio and television stations in 33 states have launched on-the-ground efforts working with community and at risk youth to keep students on-track to high school graduation. More than 1000 partnerships have been formed locally through American Graduate, and CPB is working with Alma and Colin Powell's America's Promise Alliance and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

About CPB
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,400 locally-owned and -operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology, and program development for public radio, television and related online services.

SOURCE WNET



RELATED LINKS
http://www.americangraduate.org/
http://www.thirteen.org/

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