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Iowa State to be featured on “The College Tour” TV show

By Molly Blanco, Iowastatedaily.com| October 5, 2021

“The College Tour” television show began filming this week on Iowa State’s campus.┬áCourtesy of The College Tour

The TV series “The College Tour” began filming this week for an episode featuring Iowa State. 

The show arrived on campus Monday and will continue production through Oct. 12.

“[‘The College Tour’] is an opportunity to share what makes your institution special, so we get to share the Iowa State story on a national stage,” Erica Fischer, director of enrollment marketing in the Office of Admissions said.

Fischer said filming will take place in many locations in and around campus, including “key areas” like Parks Library, the Campanile, Central Campus and State Gym.  

The show will highlight many areas and locations on campus, but Fischer said filming will not impede the day-to-day operations at Iowa State. 

“Campus will continue to function as normal,” Fischer said. 

“The College Tour” will highlight many aspects of the Iowa State experience, from student identities to campus traditions. The show will also include information about the academic experience and student resources.

“Each of the segments that we have highlights a specific piece of the university,” Fischer said. 

Fischer said all six of the undergraduate colleges will be represented, as well as the graduate college and veterinary medicine. The show will also feature programs like study abroad, honors, athletics and student organizations. 

“We have innovation as one of our segments; that’s a really popular one for Iowa State,” Fischer said. “Being recognized as the University of Science and Technology, and innovation being such a critical piece of that, we really wanted to have a focus on innovation.” 

“The College Tour” was created by Alex Boylan, a former winner of the reality show “The Amazing Race.” 

Boylan said he had the idea to create the show when his niece was exploring colleges. She wanted to visit different schools across the country, but it was expensive and difficult to travel for college visits. 

“The average college trip costs $3,000. The average high school student can’t go visit colleges,” Boylan said. 

Then, the pandemic hit, and Boylan realized a way to make college visits more accessible.

“My poor little niece had a really tough time trying to figure out where to go to college,” Boylan said. “I started doing some research online with her, and that’s when the lightbulb went off: colleges and universities need their own television show.” 

Iowa State was selected to be featured on the show after one of the producers reached out to President Wintersteen.

“[The producer] is a huge Iowa State fan and has some affiliation with Iowa State, and he really wanted to see us recognized in this area,” Fischer said.

Fischer explained that some prospective students do not have the opportunity to visit Iowa State in person, so “The College Tour” will provide another avenue for them to experience the university. 

“This is a way for us to provide a look at what it’s like to be on campus,” Fischer said. 

According to the show’s website, “each episode of The College Tour tells the story of a single college through the lens of its students.” 

Students were selected to be featured on the show through an audition process. The students were chosen to represent and host a segment about different areas of the university. 

“We did make sure that we had a broad representation. We wanted to make sure that all of the colleges were represented,” Fischer said.

“The College Tour” is currently in its second season. Iowa State is scheduled to appear in season four, and the episode is expected to air early next year. 

The show will be available to watch for free on “The College Tour” website and Amazon Prime.