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Documentary Tour of Texas Aims to Inspire Dreams of College and Beyond

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AUSTIN, Texas – A new documentary series that may help change the way students look at creating paths to careers and college is making its way through Texas.

Texas OnCourse, an initiative of The University of Texas at Austin, is embarking on a cross-Texas screening tour of “Room to Grow,” a documentary film that features 12 Texas high school students who hit the road in a giant green RV to interview successful Texans about their lives, education and career paths.

The 12 high school students included in “Room to Grow” hail from 10 different Texas cities. Those in each group of three students did not know one another before they embarked on their portion of the road trip, but over the course of their time together, walls came down, fears and dreams were shared, and futures were imagined.

The documentary follows the groups of students as they explore their local regions of Texas, talking to college students and professionals as they seek inspiration for their next steps. They sit down with people in varied education and career paths, including a lawyer who became a wind energy pioneer, academic administrators, a fashion student, an Air Force pilot, and more. Throughout the journey, the roadtrippers realize that focusing their career aspirations doesn’t have to limit their options for the future. Choosing a path can open their worlds in ways they had never imagined.

“The adventures of the students profiled in ‘Room to Grow’ are part of Texas OnCourse’s effort to help all Texas students plan for success after high school, no matter where they come from or where they’re going,” said Laura Brennan, director of Texas OnCourse. “Career exploration is a critical part of that success, and we’re proud to partner with Roadtrip Nation to offer this experience to Texas students.”

From now through Nov. 8, the screening tour will stop at seven secondary schools across Texas, where students and educators will enjoy the debut of the documentary series with those featured in the series. After each screening, students have a chance to hear from the roadtrippers, tour one of the green RVs, participate in a question-and-answer session, and interact with representatives from Texas OnCourse.

Taking place during the school day, the tour includes:

Dallas – Lincoln High School on Tuesday, Oct. 30
2826 Hatcher St., Dallas, TX 75215

San Antonio – Southside High School on Tuesday, Oct. 30
San Antonio, TX 78221

Lubbock – Lubbock High School on Friday, Nov. 2
2004 19th St., Lubbock, TX 79401

Houston – Fondren Middle School on Tuesday, Nov. 6
6333 S. Braeswood Blvd., Houston, TX 77096

Midland – Lee High School on Wednesday, Nov. 7
3500 Neely Ave., Midland, TX 79707

Austin – Crockett High School on Thursday, Nov. 8
5601 Manchaca Road, Austin, TX 78745

El Paso – Pebble Hills High School on Thursday, Nov. 8
14400 Pebble Hills Blvd., El Paso, TX 79938

“We want Texas’ students to have the opportunity to learn about career pathways they may not have previously considered,” said Harrison Keller, deputy to the president for strategy and policy and founder of Texas OnCourse. “This documentary series can change the way students look at careers and college. ‘Room to Grow’ complements the Texas OnCourse resources that are available to all Texas students, parents and counselors, equipping our families to plan for success after high school.”

The documentary is produced by Roadtrip Nation. It is available online and on PBS stations nationwide.

Funded by the state Legislature and led by UT, Texas OnCourse is the nation’s most comprehensive digital initiative for college and career preparation, helping students and families imagine and plan their futures.