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UW-RF Campus TV Show Receives State Awards

The Wisconsin Association of Public, Education and Government Access Channels has awarded the UW-River Falls weekly news and entertainment show, "Focus on U," an Award of Excellence for sports coverage and an Award of Achievement for programming.

WAPEGAC's highest award went for coverage of the UW-RF versus UW-Oshkosh football game, directed and produced by Rick Vogel, Focus on U advisor and assistant professor of mass communication in the speech and theater department. The broadcast of a sporting event was a new venture for the students, says Vogel.

"All of the students did an exceptional job on all positions that made the production a success," says Vogel. "To watch my students use skills that they had learned in the classroom and use them in a brand new situation made me quite proud."

The achievement award went for a program that discussed the persuasive tactics, the psychological impact upon children and the First Amendment rights of abortion protesters who came to campus last fall. Garett Gilbertson, a speech communications major from Stacey, Minn., was director. The show was produced by Vogel, Megan Clarke, a broadcast journalism major from Mitchell, S.D., and Jennifer Kern, a speech communications major from Hurley. Ben Friesen, a speech communication major from Lino Lakes, Minn., was technical director for both programs.

WAPEGAC is an organization that supports and acknowledges locally produced television programming offered for cable access channels.

"Focus on U" is the longest-running television program at UW-River Falls and on River Falls community cable. In its 13th season, the news program focuses on news and issues of interest to the campus and community. It can be seen live on Thursdays on cable channel 19, serving communities in western Wisconsin.


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