American Graduate Champion: Courtney Seals

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KLRU shares the inspiring stories of the people that are making our community a success! As part of our American Graduate initiative, we’re honoring American Graduate Champions that have been submitted by the community.

courtney-sealsToday’s Champion is Courtney Seals. Seals is the program director of three Southwest Key Programs that service juvenile justice youth. In her first program she helps to coordinate Enrichment Activities for youth who are being served at a court mandated treatment facility. Her second program is a Youth Mentoring program that looks to link at-risk youth with volunteer mentors in hopes to help the youth successfully complete and transition out of probation, but most importantly for the youth to have a connection to a positive community. Lastly, she works for the Family Keys Program which looks to prevent truant youth from entering the juvenile justice system altogether. She works with her case manager to provide services to the entire family in hopes to re-engage the youth with school and their community. She is one of those service providers that the youth constantly return to for help and advice. She is definitely a champion that deserves recognition! The recognition letter submitted by the community said: “The greatest thing about Courtney is her passion. Anyone that meets her would be inspired by the manner in which she serves the youth. For the youth, to know that there are providers out there that genuinely care and will sacrifice to help them fulfill their dreams and succeed is invaluable.”

Do you know someone in our community who is working to improve high school success for students throughout Central Texas? Recognize them as an American Graduate Champion! American Graduate Champions can be students who work as mentors, business leaders who serve as role models, school officials making changes to better the system, parent activists, and even struggling students who are overcoming obstacles in order to graduate.

 

 

American Graduate Champion: Cathy Requejo

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KLRU shares the inspiring stories of the people that are making our community a success! As part of our American Graduate initiative, we’re honoring American Graduate Champions that have been submitted by the community.

cathy-requejoToday’s Champion is Cathy Requejo.  Requejo is the supervisor for AISD Project HELP  (Homeless Education and Learning Program). Project HELP assists students experiencing homelessness to enroll in school and have access to academic supplies and services to participate and attend school daily. For well over a decade, Requejo has been the bridge between families experiencing homelessness and the school district. She works to ensure that school-age children are cared for and given the full extent of educational services due to them under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Act, and she works to influence policy that can better serve youth. The recognition letter submitted by the community said:  ”Work with the homeless is by its nature a quiet enterprise but by no means is it easy. Cathy works with families in the midst of turmoil to not only try to secure their basic needs, but to see school as a safe beacon for the kids, and many times for the parents themselves.”

Do you know someone in our community who is working to improve high school success for students throughout Central Texas? Recognize them as an American Graduate Champion! American Graduate Champions can be students who work as mentors, business leaders who serve as role models, school officials making changes to better the system, parent activists, and even struggling students who are overcoming obstacles in order to graduate.

 

American Graduate Champion: Mary Yancy

FEATURED_Champion2

KLRU shares the inspiring stories of the people that are making our community a success! As part of our American Graduate initiative, we’re honoring American Graduate Champions that have been submitted by the community.

mary-yancyToday’s Champion is Mary Yancy. As a practicing psychologist, Yancy is a staunch advocate for accessible mental health and wellness services for children and their families. She was instrumental in the creation of the Texas Child Study Center, supports the AISD Social Emotional Learning initiative, and currently serves on the advisory boards of the Austin Recovery Council, People’s Community Clinic and Caritas. She has helped wed the longstanding Austin ISD Peer Assistance and Leadership Program with new research and curricula on Socioemotional Learning. Her civic engagements have also included service on education, arts and social service boards including the Texas Book Festival, The Ann Richards School, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, the Seton Fund and Arthouse. The recognition letter submitted by the community said: “She knows that the true well-being of youth is based not solely on an academic focus but on a holistic view of development and experience, and she puts her own resources to work to make holistic approaches happen for all of Austin’s youth.”

Do you know someone in our community who is working to improve high school success for students throughout Central Texas? Recognize them as an American Graduate Champion! American Graduate Champions can be students who work as mentors, business leaders who serve as role models, school officials making changes to better the system, parent activists, and even struggling students who are overcoming obstacles in order to graduate.

 

American Graduate Champion: Ivanna Crippa

FEATURED_Champion2

KLRU shares the inspiring stories of the people that are making our community a success! As part of our American Graduate initiative, we’re honoring American Graduate Champions that have been submitted by the community.

ivanna-crippaToday’s Champion is Ivanna Crippa.  Crippa works at Breakthrough Austin, non-profit organization focused providing a path to college, starting in middle school, for low-income students who will be first-generation college graduates. She is a huge advocate for DACA students and immigrant students, as well. The recognition letter submitted by the community said: “There might be one or two people in this world that are more passionate about getting low-income, 1st generation students to and through college, but probably not more than Ivanna Crippa. Ivanna is a 1st generation college student, herself. Her story of being a young Hispanic girl leaving her home in Houston to attend The University of Texas in Austin is one to which many of our students can relate. Her determination and grit as a high school student applying to enough scholarships to cover her cost of attendance is inspirational. Her performance as a college adviser shows she’s leaving a legacy of students breaking the mold and finding their own voice as a college student. Ivanna impowers young hearts and minds, definitely making the world a better place!”

Do you know someone in our community who is working to improve high school success for students throughout Central Texas? Recognize them as an American Graduate Champion! American Graduate Champions can be students who work as mentors, business leaders who serve as role models, school officials making changes to better the system, parent activists, and even struggling students who are overcoming obstacles in order to graduate.

 

KLRU News Briefs: Truancy Starts Many on Pipeline to Prison, Texas Tribune Highlights House Budget Debate

Research shows young people who are involved in the court system are more likely to dropout and eventually enter the justice system. This is what people call the School-to-Prison Pipeline, and that is what our Saturday News Briefs examines. This story is part two of a story we brought you last weekend about the push to decriminalize truancy in Texas.

We spoke again to Mary Mergler, Director of Texas Appleseed’s School-to-Prison Pipeline Project about their findings on this issue. She told us the pipeline’s most common victims are minority students.

“African-American and Latino students are sent to court disproportionate to their representation in the student body,” Mergler said. “And what we know about African-American and Latino students is that they are already at a greater risk for being pushed out of school by harsh disciplinary policies. So, our same groups of students who are already at risk, are also the ones being disproportionately sent to court for truancy which we know leads them down that school-to-prison pipeline.”

Special Education students are also over-represented at truancy court. Senator John Whitmire (D-Houston), who chairs the Senate’s Criminal Justice committee, authored one of many truancy bills this legislative session and has been working on this issue for years.

“From a financial standpoint you’re going to pay now or you’re going to pay later,” Senator Whitmire said. “We spend a lot of money on criminal justice. If we would spent a fraction of that on early intervention [and] mental health? I can’t emphasize that enough.”

Once the students are ordered to court for missing school, they and/or their parents face fines up to $500. Texas Appleseed reports 80% of students sent to court for truancy are low income and therefore often unable to pay those fines. In Travis County, Justice of the Peace Judge Yvonne Williams sees some of the poorest families in our region in her courtroom.

“On this side of town, though it’s changing, the average person I see is not able to afford these fines. So to say that I’m going to make you pay a fine is like saying, Okay, fine the blood in me. I’m a turnip. What are you going to do? So you still have that problem,” Williams said.  ”You can’t pay the fine, so you go to jail. So that’s that whole pipeline. I start at school, they get me accustomed to going to court, and then now, I’m an adult, and what the heck? I’m going to prison because I did this or this. I didn’t finish school. So I’m in this underbelly, and it’s okay.”

Judge Williams tells families to plead No Contest, which enters the parent and child into an intervention program and the Class C Misdemeanor is removed from the child’s record.

“I am not going to be part of the clog that makes that happen. My court is never going to be part of that system that makes that happen. I refuse to cooperate,” Williams said.

Our Sunday piece comes from our partners at The Texas Tribune. Every Sunday from now until Sine Die on June 1, we’ll bring you legislative stories from the Tribune. This week’s Political Roundup from Multimedia Reporter Alana Rocha looks at the Texas House’s all-nighter spent debating their budget bill. Plus, a look at the early stages of Senator Ted Cruz’s presidential campaign.

KLRU News Briefs air locally during PBS NewsHour Weekend, every Saturday and Sunday evening at 6:30pm. Our Saturday story is part of KLRU’s American Graduate initiative, which is aimed at increasing awareness around the dropout crisis in Central Texas. Lydia De La Garza, who is featured in the piece, is a member of our American Graduate Advisory Group.

Do you have an American Graduate story idea? We’d love to hear from you! Email us at CivicSummit@klru.org, post a comment, or tweet at us using #amgradtx. 

 

American Graduate Champion: Dr. Paul Cruz

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KLRU shares the inspiring stories of the people that are making our community a success! As part of our American Graduate initiative, we’re honoring American Graduate Champions that have been submitted by the community.

paul-cruzToday’s Champion is Dr. Paul Cruz. Cruz is the superintendent for the Austin Independent School District, serving more than 85,000 students and more than 12,000 employees. For more than 28 years, Cruz has worked in education. He has been a teacher, campus administrator and central office administrator in Corpus Christi, San Antonio and south Texas. Dr. Cruz was also a superintendent of schools in Laredo ISD, a district with approximately 23,500 students.The recognition letter submitted by the community said:  ”Dr. Cruz is an inspiration to those of us who have immigrated to this country and who learned English as a second language. He instills pride in being Latino and has a story that motivates us to increase and continue the work ethic that as immigrants we come to this country clinging to.  Dr. Cruz has spent his career listening for and being attentive to the barriers that he has had the control to altar and take away for the families and students in the AISD educational journey. His leadership has allowed for many of these barriers to be removed and he continues to examine and create ways to ‘clear the path’ to graduation for our students and their families in the city of Austin.”

Do you know someone in our community who is working to improve high school success for students throughout Central Texas? Recognize them as an American Graduate Champion! American Graduate Champions can be students who work as mentors, business leaders who serve as role models, school officials making changes to better the system, parent activists, and even struggling students who are overcoming obstacles in order to graduate.

 

Q Night at the Movies 4/4

KLRU Q - Night at the Movies

Variety Studio: Actors on Actors at 6:30 pm
Some of the busiest actors today discuss their recent work. Featuring Jennifer Aniston “Cake” and Emily Blunt “Into the Woods”, Christoph Waltz “Big Eyes” and Ralph Fiennes “The Grand Budapest Hotel”, Marion Cotillard “Two Days, One Night” and Timothy Spall “Mr. Turner”, Chadwick Boseman “Get on Up” and Logan Lerman “Fury”.

On Story The Heart of the Superhero at 7:30 pm
The creative minds behind the films THOR, THE AVENGERS, HULK, THE INCREDIBLE HULK, ELEKTRA, THE GREEN LANTERN, X-MEN: THE LAST STAND, X2, and X-MEN: FIRST CLASS divulge the complexities of memorable heroes and villains, and how some of the best supernatural films tap into the most basic of human elements. Followed by Jeremy Kipp Walker’s SUPER POWERS, a lively short film.

Feature film Barabbas at 8 pm
The biblical thief (Anthony Quinn) toils, turns gladiator and seeks salvation after being pardoned in place of Christ.

Ain’t It Cool with Harry Knowles at 10:20 pm
Screenwriter C. Robert Cargill, Sinister/Sinister 2, and Harry explore the backbreaking world of stuntmen. Special focus is given to the late Hal Needham, an incredible Stunt Coordinator as well as Director of Smokey and the Bandit, which leads to a rare guest appearance from Hal’s great friend and legendary actor, Burt Reynolds.

Film School Shorts This Perfect World at 10:50 pm
Short Term 12 (San Diego State University) One eventful day at a group home for at risk adolescents turns into a personal journey for the head counselor, who must balance violent quarrels with a birthday celebration. Directed by Destin Cretton. Dia de los Muertos (Ringling College of Art and Design) A little girl visits the land of the dead and experiences the Mexican holiday Dia de los Muertos with the help of someone very special to her. Winner of a Student Academy Award. Directed and produced by Lindsey St. Pierre, Kate Reynolds, and Ashley Graham.

 

 

 

 

Highlights April 5-11

KLRU Highlights

Two things become clear: new nurse Phyllis Crane is not going to fit in easily and Sister Julienne and a prospective benefactor knew each other many years ago on Call The Midwife, Sunday at 7 pm.

On Mr. Selfridge, Harry attends a fateful auction, Henri has a flashback, and Edwards’ new book instigates a crisis for Kitty Sunday at 8 pm on Masterpiece Theater.

On Episode 1 of Wolf Hall on Masterpiece Sunday at 9 pm, Cardinal Wolsey is stripped of his powers after failing to secure the annulment of the King Henry’s marriage to Katherine of Aragon. His hopes of returning to the king’s favor lie with the ever-loyal Thomas Cromwell.

In 2010, 10 churches were burned down in one month, igniting the largest criminal investigation in East Texas history. Independent Lens Little Hope Was Arson airs Monday at 9 pm.

Arts In Context, Monday at 10:30, features Trouble Puppet Theater: a small arts organization in East Austin that has been able to achieve critical success and growth, while taking their cutting edge puppetry to levels never seen before in Texas.

As Shelly and the baby undergo a procedure to repair the fetus’s spine, get a close-up look at this surgery on a baby in the womb – the first time ever in a major television broadcast – on Twice Born, Tuesday at 7 pm.

Part Renaissance prince, part medieval tyrant, Henry VIII is the most famous of English kings. Venture beyond the facade of his glamorous court to understand the danger and intrigue that routinely cost courtiers their heads on Inside the Court of Henry VIII, Tuesday at 8 pm.

With cutting-edge CGI animation techniques, From Billions to None will recreate the glory of passenger pigeons in flight as well as the ways in which our 19th century ancestors destroyed them all, on Tuesday at 10 pm.

On Nature Animal Homes: The Nest, Wednesday at 7 pm, learn how birds in the wild arrive at diverse nesting grounds to collect, compete for, reject, steal and begin to build with carefully selected materials, crafting homes for the task of protecting their eggs and raising their young.

Explore the buried clay warriors, chariots, and bronze weapons of China’s first emperor on NOVA Emperor’s Ghost Army, Wednesday at 8 pm.

Hitler sees the battleship as the ultimate status symbol for his new Third Reich, but the British will stop at nothing until Hitler’s new mega weapons are at the bottom of the sea. Hitler’s Megaships airs Wednesday at 9 pm.

Singer/songwriters Ed Sheeran and Valerie June perform on Austin City Limits, Wednesday at 10 pm and again on Friday at 10 pm.

Thursday at 7 pm, Overheard With Evan Smith features Hendrik Hertzberg, senior editor and staff writer at The New Yorker.

Arts In Context at 7:30 pm Thursday profiles the Rude Mechs, a group that creates original productions that represent a genre-defying cocktail of big ideas, cheap laughs, and dizzying spectacle.

On back-to-back episodes of The Daytripper at 8 pm Thursday, Chet visits Lufkin and Athens.

Grammy-winning performer/composer Brian Wilson teamed up with an eclectic group of acclaimed musicians to perform beloved hits from his illustrious career for Brian Wilson and Friends, Thursday at 9 pm.

Stage and screen star Norm Lewis presents a show that crosses stylistic boundaries, from opera to cabaret to gospel and everything in between on Norm Lewis: Who Am I? Friday at 8 pm.

Austin City Limits presents the best in Latin music with Juanes and Jesse & Joy, Saturday at 7 pm.

Happy Easter from KLRU & KLRU Q

KLRU Highlights

For Easter Sunday, KLRU and KLRU-Q will feature specials on the origins and mysteries of the Christian church and more.

On KLRU:

Celebration of Peace Through Music – April 5 at 1 pm
Recorded live at Georgetown University’s DAR Constitution Hall, Celebration of Peace Through Music honors the 2014 canonizations of Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII by Pope Francis. Concert conductor Sir Gilbert Levine, dubbed “The Pope’s Maestro” for creating and conducting concerts for Pope John Paul II for 17 years, leads soloists and world-class orchestral and vocal ensembles in a moving musical tribute to these three spiritual leaders. Selections include Copeland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man,” Bernstein’s “Chichester Psalms,” “Ancient Polish Marian Hymn,” Verdi’s “Messa Da Requiem” and others. Each work reflects the popes’ shared commitment to promoting interfaith understanding and peace around the world.

Peter and Paul and the Christian Revolution
Part 1: The Rock and the River  – April 5 at 3 pm
With their Messiah executed, their dreams crushed and their cause deemed subversive by the strongest empire the world had ever seen, Jesus’s followers faced a bleak future. Their movement seemed destined for extinction. Incredibly, though, Jesus’s survivors turned defeat to victory; devastation to jubilation. By one account, it happened on the shores of the Sea of Galilee where Simon Peter and others envisioned the risen Jesus. Re-infused with hope and determination, Peter became an indomitable figure who would unite his group into a tight community of ardent believers. Dark days were coming however — days of persecution, imprisonment and dispersal. And when they arrived, Peter found support from an unexpected source. His name was Paul. Paul had a startling revelation that led him to embrace Peter’s faith as his own. It was a turning point in history. For once inspired, Paul turned his formidable talents to the task of spreading his new cause around the Roman Empire. Paul was educated, passionate and determined. But he was also dogmatic. And soon, he would be at the center of the most divisive conflict yet to face the young Jesus movement.

Part 2: The Empire and the Kingdom — April 5 at 4 pm
Spread outside Judea by missionaries likePeter and Paul, the Jesus movement caught on quickly among Jews and non-Jews around the Roman Empire. With success, however, came challenges: challenges from hostile locals, imperial forces and from conflicting ideas within the movement itself. Paul — adamant that there was no time for conversions — fell into open and angry confrontation with some of the oldest Jesus followers. Peter, it seems, tried to mediate the conflict. “The Rock” became a stepping stone between the camps and, for a crucial period, helped keep the movement together. But the center could not hold. Paul struck out on his own, planting churches in his image around the Mediterranean and writing letters that would become central to all later Christian theology. Finally, in 70 AD, disaster struck the headquarters of the Jesus followers. After decades of rising tension, Judea erupted in revolt against Rome. War had been raging for four years. And when Rome finally established control, it destroyed much of Jerusalem; it torched the sacred Temple and enslaved the population. The scorched ground of Judea could no longer nurture a Jewish Jesus movement. And in the end, it was Paul’s communities that would grow and change into the churches we know today.

Painted Churches of Texas — April 5 at 5 pm
From the outside, they look like many American country churches built around the turn of the last century — arched Gothic Revival windows, facades clad in white frame siding or in stone, lone steeples rising up into the Texas sky. Cross the threshold of these particular Texas churches and you’ll encounter not a simple wooden interior but an unexpected profusion of color. Nearly every surface is covered with bright painting: exuberant murals radiate from the apse, elaborate foliage trails the walls, wooden columns and baseboards shine like polished marble in shades of green and gray. These are the Painted Churches of Texas. Built by 19th century immigrants to this rough but promising territory, these churches transport the visitor back to a different era, a different way of life.

 

On KLRU-Q:

Pilgrimage With Simon Reeve: Canterbury – 3:55 pm
Simon Reeve tries medieval food and and visits the Lincoln Cathedral on a 400-mile journey to Canterbury.

Pilgrimage with Simon Reeve Europe – 4:55 pm
Simon Reeve travels from northern France to northern Spain and then crosses Western Europe to Rome.

Time Scanners Petra — 5:55 pm
Structural engineer Steve Burrows leads his team of laser-scanning experts to Jordan to scan the ancient desert city of Petra. Using 3D laser-scanning technology, he wants to uncover its construction secrets and shed new light on this architectural wonderland lost to the West for more than 1,000 years.

Mystery of Mary Magdalene –6:55 pm
Melvyn Bragg sets out to unravel the many questions surrounding one of the Bible’s most enigmatic and controversial figures. In the gospel accounts Mary Magdalene plays a central role in the Easter story. She is there at the cross when Jesus is crucified and she is the key witness to the resurrection. So why do so many people believe that Mary Magdalene was the seductive prostitute redeemed by Christ despite there being no reference to it in the Bible? This compelling documentary uncovers the real story behind Mary Magdalene’s legendary status, from her vital role in the first centuries of Christianity to her portrayal in Jesus Christ Superstar and The Da Vinci Code.

David Suchet in the Footsteps of St. Peter part 1 — 8:00 pm
The actor traces the life of St Peter, from lowly fisherman on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, to Jesus’ closest confidant who would betray his trust as an apostle in the fabled denial, and finally to the the figure regarded by the Roman Catholic Church as the first pope and bishop of Rome. In the first of two programmes, David seeks out the man behind the biblical stories, looking at how he carved an identity as both leader and flawed believer during the earliest days of Christianity.

David Suchet in the Footsteps of St. Peter part 2 — 9:00 pm
The actor traces the life of Jesus’ close confidant and apostle, St Peter, by looking at the New Testament’s account of him taking charge after the Messiah’s death. In the second part of his exploration, David wonders how a man who had previously been painted as an impetuous and confused character could have filled the shoes of such a charismatic leader. He also assesses the evidence that suggests Peter was eventually martyred as the first pope of the Roman Catholic Church.

Pilgrimage with Simon Reeve Jerusalem — 10:00 pm
Simon Reeve follows in the footsteps of travelers who made long, dangerous journeys to Jerusalem.