PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — An upcoming NBC drama about a high school theater program will be a boon to 50 real schools.

The network said Tuesday it's donating $500,000 in grants to high school theater departments nationwide.

Jason Katims, executive producer of the new series "Rise," says in a statement the grants will help supports the kind of schools and students whose stories are told in the series.

"Rise," inspired by a true story, stars Josh Radnor ("How I Met Your Mother") as a teacher who energizes his school's theater department and its working-class town. The cast includes Rosie Perez, Auli'i Cravalho ("Moana") and Damon J. Gillespie.

High schools can submit applications at through Feb. 6, with the winners to be announced in March.

"Rise" debuts March 20 after a March 13 preview.