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Press Release: Quest for Meaning of Life Brings PBS Series Roadtrip Nation to DeSales University, Tues., Aug. 29
Date: 8/23/2006


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Quest for Meaning of Life Brings PBS Series Roadtrip Nation to DeSales University, Tues., Aug. 29

Producers from Roadtrip Nation, a weekly half-hour PBS series premiering on September 1 that chronicles the cross-country travels of college students on quest for the meaning of life, will be making a stop at DeSales University on Tuesday, August 29. A presentation will be held from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the Priscilla Payne Hurd Science Center. Information on the show and how to participate in the series will be available in the signature Roadtrip Nation RV, which will be parked in front of the DeSales University Center (Dooling Hall side) from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

This summer, three DeSales students majoring in TV/Film took part in a three-day roadtrip to New York that was funded through a Roadtrip Nation grant and submitted their film footage to the series for consideration. The students, all juniors, were: Stephen F. Kardian, III, of Hawthorne, N.Y.; Amanda K. Schneider, of West Chester, Pa.; and David B. Wasserman, of Schwenksville, Pa. During the presentation at DeSales, the producers will talk about the premier of the series on September 1 and invite DeSales students to apply for additional roadtrip grants.

"Through our relationship with PBS 39, DeSales is very fortunate to welcome the producers of Roadtrip Nation," said Dr. Scott Paul, director of the DeSales University TV / Film Program. "We're thrilled to have these folks on campus to talk to our students about the show and how to find their own road in life."

Roadtrip Nation, a weekly half-hour PBS series presented by Thirteen/WNET New York, premieres at 9:30 p.m., Friday, September 1 (check local listings). In Roadtrip Nation, college students travel cross-country on a quest for the meaning of life through interviews with people who defied conventional career paths and designed their own routes through life, and in the process became both successful and fulfilled.

The visit by PBS producers of Roadtrip Nation to the DeSales campus offers a timely opportunity for the University freshmen class which is embarking on a distinctive new First-Year Experience Program, "Character U."

Wendy Krisak, assistant director of counseling at DeSales and coordinator of DeSales' First-Year Experience Program said, "The students' involvement with "Character U" should prompt them to ask the question, "Who am I?" Ultimately, the journey through 'Character U,' should help them find the answer to that question."

"Roadtrip Nation is the perfect beginning point of the journey through character development for DeSales students," said Krisak. "By listening to the wisdom of the amazing men and women who were interviewed in the Roadtrip Nation series, we hope our students will realize how the everyday decisions and choices they make slowly shape their character and who they become."

Roadtrip Nation began in 2001 with three 20-something college grads who decided, rather than pursuing jobs or graduate school, they would buy an RV and take a cross-country trip in search of enlightenment. During the group's three-month, 17,000-mile odyssey, they videotaped interviews with 82 self-made individuals who had pursued their own vision, and in the process, became successful and fulfilled. They included winemaker Robert Mondavi, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Saturday Night Live Director Beth McCarthy Miller and a Maine lobsterman named Manny. Inspired to share their experiences, the group wrote a book and produced a pilot documentary that resulted in the Roadtrip Nation movement.

By 2004, the movement had spread to college campuses nationwide, with three roadtrips taking place simultaneously in different parts of the country.

In the summer of 2005, students from the United Kingdom and Canada, as well as the United States participated. Collectively, they traveled 40,000 miles and conducted 120 revealing interviews, which form the core of the new weekly PBS series starting on September 1. Among those interviewed were New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, comedian Wanda Sykes, hip-hop mogul Damon Dash, a Yosemite mountain guide, an independent truck driver and Kevin Close, CEO of National Public Radio.

As part of a growing student movement, Roadtrip Nation has partnered with 100 college career centers across the country to run experiential learning programs and provide opportunities for students to take their own roadtrips to discover their paths in life.

The TV/Film Program is part of DeSales University's Performing and Fine Arts Department, the largest at the university. Last year, the TV/Film Program conducted a Visiting Artist in Film Series (VAFS), funded by a grant from the Dexter and Dorothy Baker Foundation, that featured master classes and public presentations as a celebration of creative, intellectual and cultural diversity.

For more information, contact Dr. Scott Paul, director of the DeSales University TV/Film Program at DeSales University, at 610-282-1100, ext. 1438.


Press Release: Quest for Meaning of Life Brings PBS Series Roadtrip Nation to DeSales University, Tues., Aug. 29 | Posted on: 8/23/2006

For more info:
Tom McNamara, Executive D
irector of Communications
DeSales University | 2255 Station Avenue | Center Valley, PA 18034

610.282.1100 x1219 | Tom.McNamara@desales.edu

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