CSUF will continue its partnership with KCET

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OC Insight host Roger Cooper, left, glances at his note cards before setting off a discussion with Kathy Marven, Bill Habermehl, and Mark Ellis. This episode about public education in Orange County will be the lat under the original terms of the partnetship between Cal State Fullerton and KCET. Photo by Charles Purnell/Daily Titan Staff Writer

Cal State Fullerton’s partnership with KCET is being renewed, and production of CSUF’s public affairs show “OC Insight” will increase from four episodes a year to 12.

One reason is because of the show’s uniqueness, said Brent Foster, assistant professor of communications and producer of “OC Insight.”

Foster said he can’t think of any show that follows the format of “OC Insight,” which involves three panelists and one host involved in a moderated discussion.

“We weren’t trying to replicate anything,” Foster said. “This was a creation from the ground up.”

The partnership between CSUF and public broadcasting station KCET is in its third year of a three-year agreement.

The partnership obliges CSUF to provide content to KCET. “OC Insight” is CSUF’s signature offering to KCET, said Jeffrey Cook, associate vice president of strategic communications and the executive producer of the show.

“OC Insight” is a talk show about issues of importance specifically to Orange County. The show airs on KCET’s Orange Channel broadcasting on cable and digital channel 28.2.

A melange of faculty members, alumni, television industry professionals and students make up “OC Insight’s” production team.

“It’s really a fantastic opportunity for KCET because they have some Orange County-specific content to put on their channel,” Cook said. “But moreover, it’s a great opportunity for the students, particularly in the college of communications, to get real-life experience in creating a public affairs talk show.”

Through the show, students get training on everything from operating cameras, lighting, applying makeup, field production and script writing.

The show’s director, lighting director and stage manager are industry professionals from KCET’s headquarters in Los Angeles.

Director of the PBS’s “Tavis Smiley Show,” Jonathan X, is also “OC Insight’s” director.

Heather Lacayo, who graduated in 2005, earning a BA in communications, is the editor of OC Insight. She said the crew does a really good job.

“Every set of shows, the quality is getting better,” she said. “I think the students are getting sharper, getting better. Everything is flowing really well. We’re all getting used to each other. It’s a nice show.”

Three new episodes were filmed in the basement of Pollack Library on April 8, which were the last productions under CSUF’s original agreement with KCET.

Episodes about the “changing faces of AIDs” and “O.C.’s history” were completed by noon. After lunch, the production team filmed an episode on “public education in Orange County.”

Two of the panelists were Kathy Marvin, a science teacher at Sierra Vista High School and one of five teachers named California teacher of the year; and Dr. Mark Ellis, assistant professor of secondary education.

“OC Insight” has, in the past, been assigned the 7 p.m. time slot right after BBC World News.

According to Cook, the demographics most likely to watch the new episodes are people who watch the news and are into current events.

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