An Inspirational “Personal Statement” on PBS

Oct. 19, 2018

Young people in a classroom, part of PBS documentary Personal Statement airing Oct. 23, 2018

Three teens in Brooklyn, New York—Karoline Jimenez, Christine Rodriguez and Enoch Jemmott—aspire to become the first generation in their families to attend college. But, like many public school students throughout the country, their schools lack the resources needed to help them reach their goal.

“Personal Statement” premieres October 23, 2018 at 8ET/7CT (check local listings) on PBS as part of a special co-distribution with WORLD’s America ReFramed. The film follows these three inspirational young people who, in spite of their own personal challenges, take it upon themselves to become peer college counselors. The documentary follows them through the college application and admission process during their senior year. They struggle to get themselves into college while doing their part to close the college guidance gap by helping their peers. The film is funded by CPB through Latino Public Broadcasting and is part of the American Graduate: Getting To Work initiative.

"Latino Public Broadcasting (LPB) is very pleased to co-present this important film," said Sandie Viquez Pedlow, Executive Director of LPB. "By shining a light on the challenges faced by so many students of color, 'Personal Statement' reminds viewers that a pathway to higher education should be available to all students, regardless of where they live or what school they attend. The young peer counselors featured in the film are an inspiration and hopefully the film will encourage other schools to adopt similar programs."

Watch the preview below.

America Reframed - Personal Statement

About American Graduate

Since 2011, the public media initiative American Graduate, made possible by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), has grown into one of the largest public media collaborations across the country with over 125 local public media organizations, and national television and radio producers and distributors, working with more than 1,700 community partners. National and local reporting, public forums and town halls, and education resources drove awareness and discussions among leaders, educators, students and concerned citizens, and inspired adults to become an American Graduate Champion for the nation’s youth. Stations played an important role helping communities address the challenges and highlight local solutions to the dropout crisis, and the national graduation rate is now at an unprecedented 84.1 percent.

In 2018, together with 19 stations, CPB launched the initiative’s next phase, American Graduate: Getting To Work, to partner with schools and businesses, and help prepare students with the skill sets and training needed to be part of the new work force, especially for high-demand fields. Join the conversation at facebook/americangraduate, and find out more through your local public media station or

This spotlight is part of a new CPB series, “Work Wednesdays,” featuring public media stations’ local content and community engagement initiatives focused on high-demand career paths and the skills needed for the workforce of today and tomorrow.