American Graduate Day 2013

Fact Sheet

Air date: 09/28/2013

American Graduate Day 2013


Fact Sheet


Program Title:   American Graduate Day 2013

Airdate:  Saturday, September 28, 2013 from 12 noon-7:00 pm ET on public media (check local listings)

Program description:    American Graduate Day 2013 – For the second year in a row, WNET presents this full-day multi-platform event live from the Tisch WNET Studios at Lincoln Center in New York 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. Nearly 30 national partner organizations, 14 local organizations, and celebrity guests involved in education and youth intervention programs will be featured.


Among the national organizations featured are: America’s Promise Alliance, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Citizen Schools, City Year, Coalition for Community Schools, College For Every Student, Computer Clubhouse,

Corporation for National and & Community Service, Excelencia in Education, Experience Corps, 4-H, Horizons National, Jobs For the Future’s “Back on Track” Model, Junior Achievement, KaBOOM!, National Center for Time and Learning,

National College Access Network, Parent-Child Home Program, Playworks, Posse Foundation, Reading is Fundamental, Sesame Workshop, Skills USA, and United Way.


WNET will feature local organizations interviewed by NYC-ARTS personality Christina Ha including: Broome Street Academy, East Side House Settlement, Friends of the Children, GO Project!, Harlem RBI, Kingsborough Early College Secondary School, Queens Public Library Discovery Center, MOUSE, New Victory Theater, PENCIL, and  SEO Scholars.  Steve Adubato and Mike Schneider (NJ Today) will host NJTVsegments.


The national outreach event 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.


On, 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 in 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.


Moderators scheduled to appear include Campbell Brown (former CNN anchor) for Citizen Schools, Juju Chang (ABC News), Rehema Ellis (NBC News), Harold Ford, Jr. (former United States Senator) for Posse Foundation, Susie Gharib (PBS Nightly Business Report), Bryant Gumbel (HBO), Rebecca Jarvis (ABC News), Wes Moore (education advocate), Alan Muraoka (Sesame Street) for Sesame Workshop, Ray Suarez (PBS) and Brian Williams (NBC) for Horizons National, among others.


Celebrities taking part in the event include Bobbi Brown (Bobbi Brown Cosmetics) for Broome Street Academy, Mike Rowe (Dirty Jobs, Deadliest Catch) for Skills USA, Mark Teixeira (New York Yankees World Champion 2009 & 2 x MLB All-Star) for Harlem RBI, and more.  Additionally, the following are scheduled to appear in testimonials about the dropout crisis: LeVar Burton (Reading Rainbow, Roots, Star Trek the Next Generation), Bill Cosby (The Cosby Show), Danica McKellar (The Wonder Years), Pitbull (recording star), Mo Rocca (The Daily Show, CBS Sunday Morning), Elisabeth Rohm (Heroes, The Client List), Stephen A. Smith (ESPN), and Brian Stokes Mitchell (Ragtime, Man of La Mancha).


Educational Outreach:Local public media stations broadcasts will have the opportunity to customize the national feed with a locally-produced live or pre-taped seven minutes segment.


Social Media: 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 to find out more about the national and regional organizations and how to help in their hometowns.


Production Credits: American Graduate Day 2013 is a production of THIRTEEN Productions LLC in association with WNET. Michael Kostel is executive producer.  Colin Powers is broadcast producer.  Colleen Goodhue is co-producer. Tomek Gross and Ryan Nantell are segment producers. Helen Maier is production coordinator. Anna Campbell is associate producer. From the Education Department, Kim Mullaney is director, state and local education, and Carole Wacey is vice president, education. Neal Shapiro is executive-in-charge.

Funding Credits:   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).

Visit the American Graduate Day Web site for more details on participating PBS and NPR stations as well as other television and radio programs: