Roadtrip Nation is a weekly half-hour documentary series that tracks the up-close and personal journeys of young people as they cross the nation to figure out what to do with their lives.
Roadtrip Productions and KQED are proud to announce the premiere of Season Nine of Roadtrip Nation on October 6, 2012, which will be distributed through American Public Television to public television stations across the country.
For the first time, in an exciting and new season on public television, Roadtrip Nation includes three in-studio episodes filmed at its warehouse headquarters. Using a transformed 1972 Winnebago as a stage, Roadtrip Nation hosted Leaders and filmed their interviews in front of a live audience. Two of the Leaders interviewed include: Veronica Belmont, gamer and host of Tekzilla, and Mike Song, choreographer for Step Up Revolution.
Another five episodes follow the self-discovery journeys of three recent college grads looking to define their own Roads in life. Elliott, a former high school English teacher, gets out of the classroom to explore a life around education, community, and creativity. Brooklyn, a self-proclaimed dreamer who left an unfulfilling job in New York City to move back in with her parents and eight siblings, hopes this Roadtrip will “jumpstart” her life. Nekeed escaped a rough childhood in Yonkers, N.Y., where he lost a brother to gang violence. Now, as the first male in his family to graduate college, Nekeed wants to define success for himself.
Starting in Portland, Maine, the Roadtrippers will travel across the country in a Green RV, stopping at cities along the way—such as Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, and St. Louis—to interview Leaders they admire and learn the steps that they took to get to where they are today.
Several of the Leaders interviewed include: world-renowned expedition photographer Jimmy Chin; an MIT researcher whose work focuses on human-robot interaction; Grammy Award-winning children’s folk singer Ella Jenkins; Griffith Observatory curator Laura Danly; and City Museum creator Bob Cassilly.
The philosophy that drives Roadtrip Nation is the search for individuals who have resisted pressures to conform and who have become successful by following their own paths. For local airtimes, go to roadtripnation.com/watch.
Christina Mitchell , firstname.lastname@example.org
Roadtrip Nation Season Nine is made possible by our friends at:
The College Board
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting
University of Phoenix Foundation
Roadtrip Nation Education teams up with the CPB’s American Graduate: Let’s Make It Happen initiative to address our nation’s dropout crisis. At-risk students are given exposure to different life pathways through various interactive mediums to get them thinking about and preparing for college.
In collaboration with the Clinton Global Initiative, Roadtrip Nation has expanded the reach of its high school curriculumto 80,000 students across 17 states. At the Clinton Global Initiative-America Annual Meeting in June 2012, Roadtrip Nation participated in a panel to help low-income youth reconnect with their futures, and brought along 3 students undergoing the curriculum to interview Leaders in education.
At roadtripnation.com, those looking to define their own Roads in life can join the Roadtrip Nation Movement in a number of different ways, whether it’s watching full episodes of the PBS series, applying for a Roadtrip, sharing thoughts in the online community, attending a live event, or beyond.
Websites and Social Media
Education Site: roadtripnation.org
Roadtrip Nation 9 – Social Media Toolkit (pdf)
Roadtrip Nation 9 – Member Guide Article (pdf)
Don’t miss out. More information below!
#901 Portland – Cambridge
A new team of Roadtrippers shares a desire to search for something bigger in life. Brooklyn, a self-proclaimed dreamer who left an unfulfilling job in New York City to move back in with her parents and eight siblings, hopes this Roadtrip will “jumpstart” her life. Elliott, a former high school English teacher, gets out of the classroom to explore a life around education, community and creativity. Nekeed escaped a rough childhood in Yonkers, N.Y., where he lost a brother to gang violence. Now, as the first male in his family to graduate college, Nekeed wants to define his next steps in life. At the New Skete monastery in New York, they interview Brother Stavros, co-founder of the monastery; he also works with its famous German Shepherd breeding program.
#902 Boston – New York City
Three college grads travel across the country to speak with Leaders who have defined their own Roads in life. The team lands at the doorstep of the MIT Media Lab, where they speak with a graduate assistant in the robotics department. Next, they talk with two women who created sOccket, a soccer ball that generates electricity, and the co-founder of Bamboo Bike Studio. The Roadtrippers also stop at the USA Shaolin Temple in New York City, where they meet founder Shi Yan Ming who is known for his super-human abilities—such as breaking rocks with his skull. They end the week meeting with Nat Paynter, director of water programs at Charity Water.
#903 Philadelphia – Chicago
Three college grads travel across the country to speak with Leaders who have defined their own Roads in life. Arriving in Philadelphia, the team meets with Rosemarie Certo, the owner of Dock Street Brewing Co., where they get a taste of her award-winning beer and her passion for the craft. Next, they travel to Chicago to speak with Grammy Award-winning children’s folk singer Ella Jenkins, who teaches the Roadtrippers a song. The team also meets with Paolo Davanzo and Lisa Marr—a happy-go-lucky couple that expresses their love for filmmaking by helping students through affordable film and media arts classes.
#904 St. Louis – Bay Area
Three college grads travel across the country to speak with Leaders who have defined their own Roads in life. While in St. Louis, the team lets their imaginations run free at the City Museum, an architectural marvel and playground made out of found objects from the city. Afterward, they sit down with founder and creator Bob Cassilly to learn what inspired him. In Idaho, they speak with sought-after expedition photographer Jimmy Chin, who opens up about his fears of failing and the dangers of extreme missions. “Fear is healthy,” he reminds the Roadtrippers.
#905 Los Angeles
Three college grads travel across the country to speak with Leaders who have defined their own Roads in life. After traveling more than 4,500 miles in 30 days, the Roadtrippers book a last-minute interview with Randii Wessen, an engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Los Angeles. Randii shares his story of constant determination—wisdom that resonates with Nekeed. The Roadtrip ends with an interview with Laura Danly, curator at the Griffith Observatory. Laura tells her story of arduous schooling to land a job as a NASA astronomer—only to realize that she’s happiest when she shares her astronomical knowledge with others. Ending their journey with a better sense of themselves and their futures, the team gives their final reflections and says their goodbyes.
#906 In-Studio Interviews: David Bader and Milena Acosta
For the first time ever, this season includes three in-studio episodes filmed at Roadtrip Nation headquarters. Using a transformed 1972 Winnebago as a stage in front of a live audience, Alumni Roadtrippers Ray, Mariana, and Hannah interview David Bader, Director of Education at the Aquarium of the Pacific, and Milena Acosta, Education Outreach Supervisor at the Aquarium of the Pacific. The audience gains insight into each guest’s path, including how David followed his childhood passion to his current position, and how Milena’s choice of “love over career” has led to a fulfilling destination. The guests then present a few interesting artifacts from the museum.
#907 In-Studio Interview: Veronica Belmont
Past Roadtrippers Mariana and Hannah join RTN staffer Jason on the Roadtrip Nation Winnebago stage to interview Veronica Belmont, Gamer and Host ofTekzilla, a technology news podcast. The audience hears about Veronica’s love for technology and the moment of serendipity that led her from humble beginnings to internet fame. Veronica urges the audience to “Think big,” and fields questions from her fans about gaming, technology, and the Road she’s paved to arrive at a meaningful job. The show finishes with Veronica playing a game of “Mario Kart” against members of the audience.
#908 In-Studio Interviews: Mike Song and Paul Dateh
Alumni Roadtrippers Ray, Hannah and Mariana interview Mike Song, Assistant Choreographer for the film Step Up Revolution, and Paul Dateh, a Hip-Hop Violinist and Youtube sensation. Audience members learn about the struggle Paul faced in pursuing his life dream, and how he overcame ‘The Noise’ of doubt directed at him from others. Paul gives the audience a performance of his work before handing the stage off to Mike Song. Addressing his own struggle with “The Noise,” Mike shares the roadblocks he’s faced, and provides a unique perspective on staying true to his path. The two guests join series director Maya to present a combined music and dance performance.
About Roadtrip Nation
In the summer of 2001, three friends decided to take a Roadtrip to seek their place in the world. The idea behind the Roadtrip was simple: If you don’t know what to do with your life, talk to people who are doing what they love, then ask them how they got there. The trio hit the road in a mechanically unsound Green RV, and three months and 17,000 miles later had interviewed 85 eclectic individuals.
Since then, Roadtrip Nation has evolved into a Movement to help individuals define their own Roads in life: including nine seasons on public television, three books, an online community, and a student network on more than 350 college campuses.
In 2009, the Movement expanded into education with the creation of RoadtripNation.org and the development of The Roadtrip Nation Experience—a hands-on, engaging curriculum that guides students through an explorative process to learn about pathways relevant to their own individuality.
Roadtrip Nation is dedicated to inspiring people everywhere to create lives based on doing what they love. To learn more, go to roadtripnation.com. And to learn more about Roadtrip Nation in education go to roadtripnation.org.
KQED (kqed.org) has served Northern California for more than 50 years and is affiliated with NPR and PBS. KQED owns and operates public television stations KQED 9 (San Francisco/Bay Area), KQED Plus (San Jose/Bay Area), and KQET 25 (Watsonville/Monterey); KQED Public Radio (88.5FM San Francisco and 89.3FM Sacramento); the interactive platforms kqed.org and KQEDnews.org; and KQED Education. KQED Public Television, one of the nation’s most-watched public television stations, is the producer of local and national series such as QUEST; Check, Please! Bay Area; This Week in Northern California; Truly CA; and Essential Pépin. KQED’s digital television channels include 9HD, KQED Life, KQED World, KQED Kids, and KQED V-me, and are available 24/7 on Comcast. KQED Public Radio, home of Forum with Michael Krasny and The California Report, is one of the most-listened-to public radio stations in the nation with an award-winning news and public affairs program service delivering more than eighteen local newscasts daily. KQED Interactive provides KQED’s cross-platform news service, KQEDnews.org, as well as offers several popular local blogs, video and audio podcasts, and a live radio stream at kqed.org. KQED Education brings the impact of KQED to thousands of teachers, students, parents, and the general public through workshops, community screenings, and multimedia resources.
About American Public Television
APT (APTonline.org) has been a leading distributor of high-quality, top-rated programming to America’s public television stations since 1961. Since 2004, APT has distributed approximately half of the top 100 highest-rated public television titles. Among its 300 new program titles per year are prominent documentaries, news and current affairs programs, dramatic series, how-to programs, children’s series and classic movies, including For Love of Liberty: The Story of America’s Black Patriots, A Ripple of Hope, Rick Steves’ Europe, Newsline, Globe Trekker, Simply Ming, Joseph Rosendo’s Travelscope, America’s Test Kitchen From Cook’s Illustrated, Lidia’s Italy, P. Allen Smith’s Garden Home, Midsomer Murders, Moyers & Company, Doc Martin, Rosemary & Thyme, BBC World News, The Rat Pack: Live and Swingin’, Johnny Mathis: Wonderful, Wonderful! and John Denver: The Wildlife Concert. APT also licenses programs internationally through its APT Worldwide service. In 2006, APT launched and nationally distributed Create® – the TV channel featuring the best of public television’s lifestyle programming. APT is also a partner in the WORLD™ channel expansion project including its web presence at WORLDcompass.org. For more information about APT’s programs and services, visit APTonline.org. For more information on Create, visit CreateTV.com.