Episode 30: Summer is for Parks with Dale Blasingame
July 4, 2022
Dale Blasingame, an assistant professor of practice in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Texas State University, joins the Big Ideas TXST podcast to discuss National Parks, State Parks and incorporating these outdoor treasures into higher education.
A founder of the Study-in-America program at Texas State, each semester Blasingame oversees a class of students who travel to public parks across the U.S. to hone their journalism skills and learn to tell stories with substance and relevance. Students benefit from the experience of studying beyond the traditional classroom setting, much like studying abroad.
Blasingame is an avid hiker and traveler. In 2014, he visited all 95 state parks in Texas in one year. He’s now almost halfway through his mission to visit all 400+ national park properties. Dale’s dog, Lucy, joins him on trips and loves to hike and climb rocks. Blasingame and Lucy were included on Texas Highways Magazine’s list of Extraordinary Texans for 2016, and his stories have been featured on TV, radio, digital and in magazines. He’s been able to marry his passions of technology and our parks by creating a course called Mobile Storytelling in the Park, in conjunction with Texas Parks and Wildlife, where students produce social video content at state parks. In 2017, Blasingame received a grant to develop the School of Journalism and Mass Communication’s first Study in America course, where he took students to do similar work in national parks. The program is now in its third year.
Blasingame is a member of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation, National Park Foundation, National Parks Conservation Association and The Trail Foundation. He’s also a licensed commercial drone pilot.
Before joining the Texas State faculty, Blasingame was a television news producer. He spent nine years at WOAI-TV in San Antonio, where he won two Lone Star Emmy awards and was nominated for a third. Before that, he was a news anchor and sports reporter for KTSA-AM in San Antonio. Blasingame is a member of the Online News Association, Society of Professional Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.