By Mike Capetillo
Texas Southern University becomes the first Historically Black University ever to receive its own channel on Comcast on Demand. The partnership is a great opportunity for students to experience hands-on training and create highly professional and entertaining programs. The channel will consist of various shows ranging from news and current events to sports, entertainment and cultural events on campus.
The specific show entitled “The Connect” is a student orientated MTV/CNN style entertainment program focusing on topics ranging from music, fashion, health, politics, current events and technology. Panel discussions will also be formatted into segments to stimulate intellectual discussions among college-aged students. The technology spotlight will focus on the great impact that technology plays on current life. The culture segments will focus on music, fashion, celebrity spotlight and upcoming events.
The show will also reach out to other Historically Black Colleges and Universities nationwide with a select “On The Road” segment. These segments will display campus life on other HBCU’s around the country.
Dr. James W. Ward, Dean of the School of Communications said that this is a step in the right direction for the university because TSU-TV will provide diverse programming to students and to the community.
“It is very exciting and we have been waiting for so long to partner with Comcast. We have programming for everyone from sports, public affairs to curtain cultural events on campus,” Ward said.
Texas Representative Garnet F. Coleman of District 147 was key in securing the deal between Texas Southern University and Comcast.
Coleman said the students have a great opportunity to learn with hands-on technology and gain valuable experience.
“I think it is very important because it will allow the public to see the values of Texas Southern University. It is a big move forward and hopefully this part will be a short period of time where it’s on demand and move straight forward to full broadcast television, which will be great,” Coleman said. “I think the students have a great opportunity to produce real programming that the public can see and it will bring forward some real good academic, informational programming to the public about various topics in our community. It also will be a place where the students can learn how to be broadcast journalists, as well as technicians over in the School of Communications,” Coleman added.
Preston Middleton, President of Next Wave Entertainment Universal Music Group, was also a huge help in securing the channel with Comcast.
“This is a very important step in the School of Communication moving forward to help the students get key broadcast experience. It is a wonderful opportunity for the students coming to the school to get experience like this on camera and get good content out to the public,” Middleton said. “I’m just very happy and I want to thank Representative Coleman for being so key in helping this come to pass,” Middleton added.
TSU President Dr. John Rudley believes the university is headed in the right direction.
“The fact that we can pull off a deal like this is an indication that Texas Southern is moving in the right direction. Having access to a Comcast channel is an asset, but we also have talented students on this campus, and that’s the real asset,” Rudley said. “We are going to make sure that we put the two together, and the Comcast deal is perfect for us and is a signal that Texas Southern is going to be heard by the community,” Rudley added.
City of Houston Mayor Annise Parker is thrilled about the collaboration between Texas Southern University and Comcast.
“Comcast is a great corporate citizen; they work really hard with us on PSA’s and providing important information to our citizens. This is a great opportunity to allow the students of Texas Southern University some real world, real time broadcast experience and I thank Comcast for doing it and I salute TSU for stepping up and getting out in front of everybody else,” Parker said.
Houston City Council Member Wanda Adams and alumnus of TSU said she is excited about the partnership with Comcast.
“I’m so happy for Texas Southern University in celebrating with their partnership with Comcast. I’ve been a proud alumnus of TSU and this partnership has made me even prouder,” said Adams. “They’re always providing great information out to the community and available resources that they have is one of the things I like about Comcast. The students at TSU will be able to take what they’re learning right now through Comcast and have more of a hands-on experience at looking at the different technologies that are available to them,” Adams added.
Senior broadcast journalism major Reagan Miller expressed feelings of fellow students when she said,
“Words cannot express how grateful we are for this opportunity. We are so grateful that you (Comcast) have given us the chance to prove ourselves. We are smart and we can overcome anything. Thank you for giving us a chance.”
The university is definitely headed in the right direction and Comcast is the perfect way to keep Texas Southern University moving forward.
TSU-TV is now available to Comcast customers.
For more information about TSU-TV on Comcast on Demand, follow them on Facebook at “The Connect on TSUTV,” and Twitter “TheConnect_TSU.”