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University of Texas at Austin Receives $2.17 Million Moody Foundation Grant Award

March 18, 2013

Press Release, February 28, 2013

AUSTIN, Texas — The Department of Radio-Television-Fim at The University of Texas at Austin has received a $2.17 million grant from the Moody Foundation to create “UT3D,” the first comprehensive 3-D production curriculum in the country.

Don Howard, associate professor and production area head in the Department of Radio-Television-Film, will serve as director of the program, which will offer classes to undergraduates beginning in the fall of 2013. Radio-Television-Film graduate Wayne Miller (B.A.,’77), executive producer at the leading Los Angeles-based 3-D film, television and new media studio SD Entertainment, helped envision the program and will help ensure its sustainability as co-chair of the advisory council.

“3-D content and technology are headed for a revolution across all platforms,” Miller said. “It’s imperative to share this new tool kit with future filmmakers so they have the training and experience for the jobs of the future. By providing students an understanding of 3-D technology and hands-on experience with state-of-the-art equipment, The University of Texas at Austin is bound to become the leader in 3-D education.”

The Moody Foundation grant will be given over a five-year period. Classes will be taught at the Belo Center for New Media and the ACL Live at the Moody Theater in downtown Austin — the recording studio for the PBS television show “Austin City Limits” — where students will use the studio’s 3-D production and performance facility.

“We’re delighted to support UT3D,” said Ross Moody, trustee of the Moody Foundation. “The Moody Foundation’s focus on educating the youth of Texas is consistent with funding the establishment of the UT3D curriculum. Students will also gain first-hand experience in 3-D production at the Moody Theater to start their real-world training, and when they graduate, they’ll be ahead in the growing medium of 3-D.”

In addition to receiving leadership from current Radio-Television-Film faculty members, UT3D will draw upon industry professionals — directors, technicians, producers and executives — to mentor students, including the executives and production team from SD Entertainment.

Students will produce a range of 3-D content — including plays, sports, documentaries and narrative pieces — and explore recent 3-D innovations, such as “glasses-free” 3-D for television, tablets, cellphones and small display devices.

UT3D was also made possible by Tim McClure, GSD&M Advertising co-founder and College of Communication advisory council member, who provided guidance on the creation of the program and will continue to connect the college with industry partners.

“This grant represents an overwhelming investment in the College of Communication and Central Texas by the Moody Foundation, a long-time supporter of education and the arts,” said Roderick P. Hart, dean of the College of Communication. “The college is also grateful to its community and industry partners and UT3D Director Don Howard, who will prepare our students for the burgeoning 3-D industry.”

The Moody Foundation is a charitable organization that makes grants primarily in Austin and Dallas, with an emphasis on education, social services, children’s needs and community development. The Moody Foundation was created by Mr. and Mrs. W. L. Moody Jr. to benefit in perpetuity present and future generations of Texans.

For more information, contact: Laura Byerley, College of Communication, 512 471 2182;  Donald Howard, Department of Radio Television Film, College of Communication, 512-471-4071.

Using a Latino Lens to Reimage Aid Design and Delivery

March 4, 2013

Summary from the Excelencia in Education website

Federal financial aid is critical to student access and success in postsecondary education for many students, including most Latinos. However, current realities are challenging the effectiveness of federal financial aid policy today.

This white paper uses a Latino lens to articulate challenges and opportunities for financial aid policy using both public data and input by students, institutional partners, and other stakeholders. The Latino lens is not intended to exclude consideration of other groups. Instead it offers a contemporary lens to more accurately see America’s student population and provides a fresh perspective on financial aid policy using the profile of this young and growing population as the baseline, rather than the footnote, to define the post-traditional student.

Traditional   Student Profile

Post-traditional   student profile

College ready Many need academic prep or remediation
Enroll in a college or university full-time Enroll at a community college and part-time
Enroll the fall after high school graduation Delay initial postsecondary enrollment while entering the workforce
Live on-campus Live off-campus with their parents or with their own dependents
Complete a bachelor degree in four years Take more than four years to complete a degree
Parents have college degree First in family to enroll
White, non-Hispanic Latino or African/American
Do not work while enrolled May work 30 hours or more a week
Make college choices based on financial aid, academic programs   offered, and institutional prestige Make college choices based on cost of attendance, location, and   accessibility

 To download the report or its executive summary, please go to:

Characteristics of Early Community College Dropouts

March 4, 2013

Abstract of report

Written by Peter M. Crosta,, February 2013.

For colleges to develop effective dropout prevention strategies, it is necessary to have a clear picture of who these early dropouts are. This report identifies distinguishing characteristics of this group by analyzing six years of transcript data on 14,429 first-time college students who in 2005 and 2006 enrolled at one of five community colleges in a single state. Of these students, 28 percent never returned to the same college after their first semester, and the majority of these students never attended any college again.

Early dropouts were, on average, older than early persisters. While early dropouts did not differ appreciably from early persisters in terms of secondary credentials, their developmental placement rates suggest that they were somewhat less academically prepared than early persisters. Early dropouts performed very poorly in their college coursework, particularly in their developmental courses. With failure and withdrawal rates in some courses exceeding 60 percent, it is clear that the first-term experience for early dropouts was not a positive one.

To read the full CCRC Analytics article, please go to:

The latest from the Pew Research Hispanic Center

February 18, 2013

The latest Pew Research Hispanic Center report compares 2000 census information to 2011 projections.

Findings pertaining to the State of Texas include the following:

  • Texas’ foreign-born population increase is the third largest in the nation with 4.2 million immigrants arriving in the state in 2011. This is more than the number moving to Flordia.
  • Texas’ immigration figures far exceeded those of Arizona (with 868,850) and New Mexico (with 211,533). Only the state of California exceeded the number of new immigrants moving into a state in 2011.
  • While California’s foreign-born population is larger than Texas’, our rate has grown faster (45.7% between 2000 and 2011). This is faster than any other border state (California with 15.1%; Arizona with 31.2%; and New Mexico with 41.4%).
  • Nearly sixty percent (59.7%) of all foreign-born people living in Texas came from Mexico.

National data also reveals the following:


  • Of immigrants arriving after 2006, 62.5% of all foreign-bornadults (18 and older) speak English “less than very well.”
  • Of immigrants arriving after 2006, 45.4% of all children (under 18) speak English “less than very well.”
  • Even for those adults coming to the US before 1990, 43.7% still speak English “less than very well.”
  • Of Mexican immigrant adults, 39.5% have less than a 9th grade education. Combined with those not completing high school, this means that of all Mexican adult immigrants, 59.2% lack a high school diploma or GED.


  • College enrollment for Mexican immigrants has increased from 7.4% in 2000 to 15.4% in 2011.


  • More than half (51.6%) of all Mexican-born residents in the US had personal earnings of less than $20,000 in 2011.
  • The Mexican immigrant median income was only $19,000 — the lowest of all immigrant populations; and it was far below the national average for native born residents ($30,000).
  • The median household income was also the lowest ($34,000). In comparison, South American immigrants had a median household income of $49,600.
  • 49.5% of all Mexican immigrant children lived elow the poverty line (versus 22.1% of native born children).

Source of information:

Grant allows Brazosport College to develop safety training for contractor workers in petrochemical plants

February 12, 2013

Brazosport College received a Susan Harwood Safety Grant from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in September of 2011 to develop and deliver safety training to increase the safety awareness of contractor workers placed in large petrochemical plants.

Ten lessons were created, including Personal Protective Equipment, Importance of Recognizing Safety in the Workplace, Recognizing Hazards, Fall Protection, Slips, Trips Falls/Ladder Safety, Area Classification, OSHA’s Hazard Communication/Right to Know, Electrical Safety, Heat Stress and Hand and Power Tools.

Participants included students enrolled in craft college courses and/or co-op classes at Brazosport College, as well as new hire employees from local chemical companies.  A total of 285 individuals were trained more than 964 hours.  The project concluded in 2013.

Overall student impression of the training was positive, with numerous comments about the usefulness of safety information, good coverage of basic safety information and good instructor knowledge/presentation. During the Fall 2012 sessions, three participants chose to repeat a few training sessions, telling instructors they had never had the opportunity to have safety training like this and wanted to hear and see the material again.

Brazosport College can offer these lessons to interested parties at no cost. Contact Dr. Madonna Adams, Director of the Center for Business/Industry Training at Brazosport College, at for further information.

Youth Literacy Grants – Dollar General Literacy Grant Programs

January 24, 2013

Youth Literacy Grants: Dollar General Literacy Foundation Youth Literacy Grants provide funding to schools, public libraries, and nonprofit organizations to help students who are below grade level or experiencing difficulty reading. Grant funding is provided to assist in the following areas:

  • Implementing new or expanding existing literacy programs
  • Purchasing new technology or equipment to support literacy initiatives
  • Purchasing books, materials or software for literacy programs

Deadline to Apply: May 23, 2013

Maximum Grant Award: $4,000

More Information:

Adult Literacy Grants – Dollar General Literacy Grant Programs

January 24, 2013

Adult Literacy Grants: Dollar General Literacy Foundation Adult Literacy Grants award funding to nonprofit organizations that provide direct service to adults in need of literacy assistance. Organizations must provide help in one of the following instructional areas:

  • Adult Basic Education
  • General Education Diploma Preparation
  • English Language Acquisition

Deadline to Apply: February 28, 2013

Maximum Grant Award: $15,000

More Information:


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