written by Shari Sentlowitz | Market Development Manager, Education Solutions
There are four weeks left until the start of NAB and the 51 students participating in this year’s Sony NAB Student Experience Program have been assigned to three teams and have started to get to know each other virtually. This week we are highlighting three participating schools. Liberty University and Stevenson University are both new to the program and USC is returning for their third year. Take a moment to learn about each school and their participating students.
This year marks the USC School of Cinematic Arts 3rd year participating in the Sony NAB Student Experience Program. According to Doug Wellman, Assistant Dean, the Sony NAB Internship “has proven to be one of the most popular events on the school calendar.”
Internships are generally offered to the school’s cinematography track students at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. “These students have a specific interest in technology and it is a real benefit for them to see the latest products and to speak with the Sony staff and engineers at length,” Wellman said. Students bring this knowledge back with them and share it with their fellow students, so many more benefit from their experience. Since the Sony booth contains a large array of products across the electronics spectrum the students get to see the latest in workflow from image acquisition to projection. “The consensus has always been that the experience is enlightening and a great deal of fun.”
Meet USC’s Students:
Christian Contreras is originally from El Paso, TX where, from a young age, always dreamed of a future in filmmaking with emphases in camera and lighting. In 2008, Christian received his BA in Communication and Theatre Arts at the University of Texas – El Paso where he concentrated in theatrical lighting design. After a successful academic career upon the stage, Christian decided to pursue his MFA from the School of Cinematic Arts at University of Southern California where he focused on cinematography and directing. Now in his final year at USC, Christian continues to hone his craft in both cinematography and directing by shooting as much as he can.
Dima Otvertchenko grew up as a Russian immigrant in the NYC area, enamored with American films. After studying film production at Vassar College, Dima moved to Los Angeles and worked full-time for HGTV reality shows, then freelancing as a photographer and videographer. Today he is a graduate student at USC working on his thesis, a short rock musical.
Rachel Han Xu was born in Beijing, China in July 1987. She came to Los Angeles after graduating from college, and she is now in her 3rd year in the MFA Production Program at USC The School of Cinematic Arts. She enjoys traveling the world, meeting new people and of course being on set (especially camera department) and making the magic happen.
Liberty University’s Pamela R. Miller, Professor and Director of Student Programming is excited about having her students participate in the program for the first time. “I can’t think of a better way to broaden their understanding of what’s ahead for them as they graduate and enter the business of digital storytelling”.
Liberty University’s highest aim as they go forward in the digital media area is that Liberty University students graduate with the skill set, passion and character to create media of the highest professional caliber. “The opportunity to have our students take part in the SONY Student Experience means we’re adding one more valuable layer to the training that will allow them to reach this goal. This environment gives our students a look at an aspect of the industry that is rarely available in the classroom. Not only will they have an opportunity to help spread the word about SONY and their products, but they will participate in conversations with industry leaders from large and small businesses and venues and hear firsthand what the needs and opportunities are in the changing world of our technology.” said Miller .
Meet Liberty University’s Students:
Matthew Atkins is broadcasting major from Liberty University. He is currently the director for Liberty club sports and a cameraman for the Flames Sports Network and has worked extensively in live sports broadcast over the past two years as a director, td, cameraman and utility.
Courtney Aube is a senior at Liberty University majoring in Communications Broadcasting. She is currently the office manager of the campus radio station, 90.9 The Light, where she creates public service announcements, helps students learn radio equipment, and keeps the station running efficiently. Courtney has also done camerawork as the host of a weekly campus video broadcast, Around Liberty in 90 Seconds, which is shown to the student body during convocations. After graduation, Courtney plans to attend graduate school in the fall to continue her education in media and communication relations. She is a member of Lambda Pi Eta, the National Communications Honor Society.
Stevenson University is a career-focused institution. The Department of Film/Video educates its students to be adaptable lifelong artists, craftspeople, and learners who are capable of maintaining focus, resilience, self-control, and motivation through both success and failure. Graduates must be able to navigate the ever-changing technological landscape while developing and maintaining an original and personal aesthetic vision and be able to effectively communicate this vision to others. The schools motto, “Pro Discendo, Pro Vivendo” (“For Learning, For Living”), speaks to the principles of preparing their students for jobs that we hold dear. “ This opportunity, to travel to the annual NAB conference and work with the latest technologies and see professionals from all aspects of our field falls right in line with this mission, says Christopher Llewellyn Reed, Chair/Associate Professor, Department of Film/Video. “ This is our first time attending, and we are looking forward to what it will bring our selected students, who will hopefully return with knowledge and experience to share.”
Meet Stevenson University’s Students:
Collin Diesenberg is a 21 year old senior film major at Stevenson University, who was introduced to the multimedia field at a young age. Since then his passion has grown as he learned video production and graphic art design in high school and then progressed to film in college. Though it wasn’t until a workshop with career Assistant Director Craig Houston that Collin knew he wanted to be a producer/AD. While his talents lie in arts management, Collin loves to work with the camera, and has been a Director of Photography on several school projects and is an avid photographer as well.
Starting at a young age, Chelsea Clough always knew that her life would involve a camera. Beginning with photography, Chelsea extended her skills by enrolling at Stevenson University as a video major and is currently a sophomore. Along with a full-time course load, Chelsea is also the photography intern for marketing and public relations as well as a Resident Assistant for freshman.