PCTVHD Broadcast 2011-2012 #11. STN Sweet 16 Special Broadcast from Dallas, Texas. Episode from 3/21/2012. Thanks to Vimeo, you can now view it online!
Eight members of the PCTV Upper School Broadcast program traveled to Dallas, Texas on March 21st to March 24th to participate in the 9th annual Student Television Network national convention. The students, Brittany Paris, Anna Moros, Caitlin Epstein, Lauren O'Hara, Matthew Kronengold, Rachmiel Naness, Hunter Fields, and Christian Hyatt, returned home with unforgettable memories and real-world experience that will last a lifetime. They participated in numerous national contests, breakout sessions, training courses, and listened to keynote speakers from the television industry.
Their first day began with an intense 16 hour competition known as the annual sweet 16. At 6:30 am they entered a huge convention hall filled with over 2000 students from High School's across the nation. They were briefed with a list of 16 words for which to choose from for their contest entry. They chose the word "progressive" from the list and got straight to work. The task was to create a 16 minute broadcast that creatively infused their chosen word. They were told they could go anywhere in Dallas to accomplish this. Swiftly, they began this daunting task. They quickly shared ideas for stories and started planning their shoots accordingly. Two hours later, the show was planned, the locations were chosen, and off they went to begin production. It was team work, collaboration, creativity, and real word challenges. They problem solved along the way as stories changed and evolved and by 5pm that day, the shooting was finished. Next, it was off to the hotel to write scripts, shoot anchor portions, and begin post production and assembly of their sweet 16 show. They worked diligently together as raw video and interviews came together as finalized, polished news segments. With some pizza in hand around 10pm that night, the show was almost finished. All that was left was graphics. At approximately 11:28pm, the team finished their show with a mere 1 minute and 30 seconds to spare before time expired on the deadline clock. The experience was stressful, invigorating, yet rewarding. The entire team knew that something special had happened. They knew that they had accomplished something big. Bigger than any Pine Crest newsteam before them. They had done what approximately 40 other schools could not do, they had successfully come together as one of the smallest teams competing to complete and turn in their sweet 16 broadcast entry. Celebration ensued for approximately 1 hour following the finish of this intense competition after which the exhausted students laid down to rest for what would promise to be another amazing couple of days in Dallas at STN 2012.
Although somewhat less intense, the second and third days were filled with individual contest deadlines and training breakout sessions. Our students entered in Live Reporting, Street Reporter, Commercial Production, and Broadcast Newswriting competitions. They heard from Martin Savidge, a lead CNN anchor and correspondent. They took Adobe Premiere professional training courses. This was a real conference, just like any other professional industry conference, only this was all for the students.
Somewhere, in the midst of their busy schedules, a judge from the sweet 16 competition approached them to personally commend them for their sweet 16 entry. This was an amazing experience for them. They were thrilled that a judge actually took the time to come and talk to them about their entry. More on that in a bit.
The convention was not all business, it also provided some amazing down time for them.
On Thursday night, STN provided students with a fun night by re-creating a famous Texas tradition. They held a rodeo at the convention center. Students danced and took part in several games including an armadillo race, and got a chance to see one of the most incredible new production tools known as the "Big Freeze" , a 360 degree camera.
On Friday night, after a nice Texas steak dinner, they attended a student film and music festival which was extremely eye opening. They witnessed first hand just how much talent some High School filmmakers posess.
On Saturday morning, it was time for the closing ceremonies. They entered in the the massive convention hall for STN's award and recognition ceremony. The music was pumping, the lights were flashing, and bugs were in all of their stomaches! They anxiously awaited the results of each individual contest as well as their sweet 16 competition in a ceremony that rivaled the academy awards. Student presenters from around the country delivered the news of each competition. One such presenter was from nearby school, American Heritage. Although sadly, the PCTV team emerged with no accolades, they took away the experiences they shared with one another and the memories that will last a life time. Besides, who else got a personal commendation from a judge ? it must have been a close call, but as with all judged contests, the results are highly subjective. You may think that after all the team went through they would be upset, bummed, in need of a pick-up speech, and down. This was quite the opposite of the Pine Crest team, they were still extremely content and proud of their entry. They were proud of what they accomplished together, and how they overcame the challenges of the sweet 16 competition. They were thrilled to have been personally commended by a judge. That is what it means to be a Pine Crest Panther, and 8 true Pine Crest panthers left Dallas with one thing on their minds, Los Angeles STN 2013. They plan to return to STN, being held in California next year, and make their mark once more. Furthermore, after having been exposed to the fact that they aren't alone, that they are part of something much, much bigger, that they belong to an organization of student broadcasters across the nation, they now have a renewed vision for their own student broadcasts and plan to implement what they have learned to make immediate improvements to their shows.
Go Pine Crest!!