“The College Tour” films on campus

“The College Tour” films on campus

By Kate Murphy, The Northern Iowan I October 16, 2022

Television personality Alex Boylan was on campus the week of Oct. 10-14 filming for the UNI episode of “The College Tour.” The initial call for students to submit videos telling their stories and connection to UNI was sent out in August. Ten students were selected to be featured on the show as it profiles the university and all it offers.

UNI students to be featured in 30-minute episode to be released in 2023

The series “The College Tour” began filming on UNI’s campus this past Monday and will be released in 2023.

The episode will follow 10 different UNI students and their personal experiences at the University of Northern Iowa. “The College Tour” streams on Roku and Amazon and will feature a 30-mintue episode about UNI’s campus.

Pete Moris, director of university relations, said a lot of preparation and planning on the part of the University Relations staff went into filming on campus. 

“Jess Betts and Sean O’Neal were the two individuals who primarily worked hands-on with the producers and the crew, and they did a great job.” Moris said.

The series was created by many award-winning producers including Alex Boylan and Lisa Hennessy. The first episode aired in Sept. 2020. One of the reasons for creating this series was due to the pandemic occurring in 2020. College tours were shut down during the pandemic, but this series made it possible to tour campuses virtually.

Moris said they got so many students submitting their stories on campus. The toughest part was narrowing down the list of students participating to only 10.

“We had so many great submissions from our students,” Moris said, “It was really a good problem to have with so many UNI students wanting to tell their compelling story about their UNI experience.”

The series plans to showcase what each student enjoys most about UNI and the Cedar Valley. Each student’s story is going to be a unique experience they’ve had as a UNI Panther.

“There’s really a diverse cross-section of our campus represented. One of our objectives was to highlight the best that UNI has to offer and it was tough to really narrow things down to 10 students and their stories.” Moris said. 

Moris thinks one of the best things about this series is that it showcases real students that are not acting. The series is a reality TV show that features different college campuses every episode. According to Moris, each student submitted a video sharing their stories and why they wanted to be involved in the production.

“For one student, they wanted to talk about how their financial aid package made a four-year degree accessible,” Moris said, “We’ve got other students talking about how much they love the arts and theater scene on campus. For another student, the sense of community and the relationships they’ve developed was an area they wanted to accentuate.”

According to Moris, the objective of having the University of Northern Iowa featured in this series is to show people what a wonderful place UNI really is. 

“We’re excited about the vast audience that will get to see UNI featured on a variety of platforms,” Moris said, “We’re really looking forward to seeing all the planning and hard work showcase the many positive things UNI has to offer.”

Moris believes that it’s always better for students and parents to come see campus in person, however, “The College Tour” is a great way to introduce folks to UNI and hopefully spark their interest in becoming Panthers.

The full episode with host Alex Boylan is set for release sometime in early 2023. Moris said behind-the-scenes and teasers will be released leading up to the official launch of the episode. 

“If you’re a high school student, take a look at our campus and all we have to offer from students who are here right now.” Moris said.