News program for Middle Georgia Hispanic community going strong

Moises Velez wanted television programming for Middle Georgia’s Hispanic community, and he made it happen.

Through a partnership with Mercer University, Velez’s “¿Que Pasa?” news show, broadcast entirely in Spanish, is in its 23rd week on Mercer’s WMUB channel.

“We try to do a summary of the most important news in the area,” Velez said.

Velez said one goal of the show is to integrate the Spanish-speaking community into what’s going on in other parts of Middle Georgia.

“We all saw the need for doing this,” he said. “We bridge the gap between the communities.”

The show is an asset to WMUB, said Brad Bostwick, the director of operations and programming. The channel can be found over the air on Channel 38 or on Cox channel 112 and various other cable providers.

“We at WMUB feel that the growing Hispanic community represents an underserved constituency in this market when it comes to media offerings, and public service is a major component of our station’s mission,” Bostwick said.

In addition, Velez brings his own rapport with the Hispanic community to the program. He is the editor of Que Pasa Communications, which includes a newspaper and digital offerings.

“I am pleased to be working with Moises,” Bostwick said. “He is well respected within the community and seems to know everyone. He brings a level of professionalism that we strive for at WMUB.”

The channel is part of a collaboration at Mercer’s Center for Collaborative Journalism and also broadcasts the university’s athletics as well as other community news programs. The sports and news schedule will get even more extensive as classes start back later this month.

“Most of this programming will be aimed at multiple demographic segments but will target a range of interest areas, from sports to arts to local news,” said CCJ Director Tim Regan-Porter.

Velez hopes that “¿Que Pasa?” can have a bigger role in that relationship in the future.

“If we were to do this correctly, we could have some interns from Mercer,” he said, noting that those internships could help students find employment at larger networks such as Univision. That network’s programming is aimed at Hispanics in the United States.

In addition to each week’s scheduled television broadcasts at 8:30 p.m. Friday, 7 p.m. Saturday and 7 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. Sunday, “¿Que Pasa?” is also streamed online at wmub.tv/watch-now. Recent episodes are also available at www.quepasaga.com.

That digital presence adds to the potential influence of the program.

“WMUB and ‘¿Que Pasa?’ are not only reaching people locally, but worldwide,” Regan-Porter said.

To contact writer Jeremy Timmerman, call 744-4331 or find him on Twitter @MTJTimm.