Mass Comm Mobile Production Trailer Expands TV Capability
Within little more than the past year, the WDSU-TV crew has expanded into a multi-camera video team with on-the-road capability through the acquisition of a mobile video production trailer.
In early 2016, the television production branch of the Department of Mass Communication successfully obtained $93,000 in Title III funding to purchase the mobile video production (MVP) trailer, which has enhanced the professionalism of the WDSU-TV crew.
The implementation of the MVP trailer marks the latest development of Mass Comm’s television production capabilities and activities, which over the years has increased the students’ hands-on exposure to professional television production equipment.
In 2009, television production students were doing the first regular multi-camera video production of DSU football and basketball events. The events were “live-on-tape” recorded, which then provided taped broadcasts of the games on the WDSU-TV channel on campus.
With a combination of Title III funds and lab fees, Mass Comm began making technology purchases that ultimately converted its television production from an analog video system to a digital video and IPTV technology system. This conversion opened the door for the students to begin doing live video streaming broadcasts.
The WDSU-TV student crews successfully video streamed for the first time on the DSU YouTube site the 122nd Commencement Ceremony in 2013. That led to the live streaming broadcast of football and basketball games, as well as other campus events.
However, to do such a broadcast required significant time in transporting all of the individual video broadcast components (video cameras, cables, and video control room technology) to the event site, setting up, tearing down and transporting back to Mass Comm. This was in addition to the live broadcasting work.
“This prompted Mass Comm to petition for Title III funding for the purchase and building of a mobile video production trailer – literally a TV studio on wheels,” said Vince “Chelli” Ciammaichelli, Mass Comm technology director and instructor.
The funding was obtained and the production trailer was built by Applied Video Technology of Kimberton, Pa. The trailer was delivered in time for WDSU-TV crew to live stream Lady Hornets and Hornet Men’s games during the DSU 2015-16 basketball season.
Since the video production trailer’s implementation, in addition to basketball, WDSU-TV students have produced, directed and live streamed football, baseball and lacrosse games, as well as December and May Commencements and events held in the EH Theatre and the MLK Jr. Student Center.
“The ultimate goal is to actually acquire funding to ‘hit the road’ and travel with the teams to stream the games back to campus so students can see their Hornets in action…again, at no cost to students or alumni,” said Mr. Ciammaichelli, mass communications instructor and technology director. “If the funding becomes available, I am going to seek a way to work out the students’ study time, similar to the student athletes’ time away from class.”