Apr 192006
Authors: Mary Swanson

CSU-TV Channel 11 will capture the scientific strides made by CSU scientists with Friday’s launch of CloudSat and CALIPSO satellites from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. It will be a moment of $217 million in the making.

“Inside Colorado” will air the launch of the project that was created in part by CSU scientists and Boulder-based Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corporation.

Created by the university, “Inside Colorado” is a local interest series that features footage from around the state. The show is also part of a makeover for CSU-TV Channel 11.

Currently when it is not airing weekdays from 8 p.m. to midnight, CSU-TV broadcasts foreign language programming operated by SCOLA. SCOLA is a non-profit organization that transmits television programming from around the world via satellite.

During the next few years, CSU-TV will slowly phase out much of its foreign language programming.

CSU communications and creative services recognize that there is an audience for SCOLA but the department wants to create programming for a more diverse audience.

“Foreign language programming is essentially filler,” said Gil Mulley, director of CSU-TV Channel 11. “We want to expand it to programming that is more relevant to the state of Colorado and that demonstrates the quality of the university.”

Mulley said the university has begun to expand its programming beyond SCOLA by airing weekend children’s programs and “Inside Colorado.”

News of these modifications has some students excited about the future of CSU-TV.

“Switching to something more appealing can only help that appeals to more people can only help the station,” said James Foreman, a junior civil engineering major.

However, not everyone is happy about this change.

“It is depriving people of a cross-cultural experience,” said SCOLA watcher Matt Pollard, a sophomore biology and German double major.

CSU-TV is what is known as a PEG station, a channel given to the community intended to function in some public, educational or governmental capacity. Comcast Cable gave four public access channels to the Fort Collins area, one of which is CSU-TV.

“Comcast is committed to giving back to the community,” Cindy Parsons, a Comcast Cable spokeswoman said. “As part of the legal requirement of the franchise in any given community,” Parsons wrote in an e-mail interview, “cable operators are obligated to set aside access channel(s) when the community has legitimately demonstrated the need for community access programming.”

Mary Swanson can be reached at regional@collegian.com

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