NORMAN — University of Oklahoma journalism professor and decorated foreign correspondent Mike Boettcher gave his two most recent Emmy Awards to the university Tuesday afternoon.
Selected by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Boettcher’s news package, “American Valor: Home of the Brave,” was awarded two News and Documentary Emmys for outstanding feature and best story in a regularly scheduled newscast Oct. 1 in New York City.
“American Valor: Home of the Brave” aired on ABC’s “Nightline” over the 2011 Memorial Day weekend. Boettcher’s coverage was produced during a year-long effort in which he and his son, Carlos, used videos and photos to detail the personal stories of those serving on the front lines. Delivering lectures via Skype, Boettcher, along with OU journalism professor John Schmeltzer, helped students produce news stories with his material in a course titled “Afghan 101.”
“Today is another example of the kind of innovative things happening in this college,” OU President David Boren said. “This was a team effort between ABC News, Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication, Professor John Schmeltzer and the students in the ‘Afghan 101’ course. We’re extremely proud that Mike has made history.”
Boettcher said his donation of the Emmys was in recognition of the students who participated in “Afghan 101,” whose efforts he said “kept me and my son inspired to press on during our two years in Afghanistan.”
“When we first dreamed of doing this ambitious project, it was the generosity of the Sarkeys Foundation that turned the dream into a reality,” Boettcher said. “They invested in our students, and public service was the only dividend they expected. The entire college worked hard to meet those expectations, and the two National Emmys are proof of that.”
“American Valor: Home of the Brave” is available on YouTube. Information and student stories are available on afghan101.ou.edu.