Communication students film for nonprofits

Broadcasting live: Senior Tora Thuland edit their video projects.  Photos by Isabella Del Mese- Staff Photographer
Broadcasting live: Senior Tora Thuland edit their video projects.
Photos by Isabella Del Mese- Staff Photographer

Students in California Lutheran University’s broadcast news production class are practicing their skills by producing videos to highlight the services of nine local nonprofits.

Communication professor David Grannis wrote in an email that each video will feature interviews with the people involved in the nonprofit. These interviews will be mixed in with footage of the organization in action, Grannis said.

According to senior Tora Thuland, the students are responsible for both filming and editing the footage.

Grannis said that once the videos are complete, they will be compiled into a single show in which student anchors will introduce the various nonprofits.

The final show will be broadcast on the local public and government channel “to raise awareness about the different social services in the county and what they have to offer,” according to Grannis.

That is not the only purpose this project might serve.  Thuland said the videos will also featured on the organization’s websites and students can use them in their portfolios.

But these results will not come without challenges, according to Grannis and his students.

Grannis said the biggest challenge so far has been “striving to maintain a high production value.”

Junior Christopher O’Shea said an additional challenge his group faced was coordinating their schedules to film.

“The nonprofits are quite busy,” O’Shea said. “We always have a hard time finding time between school. So finding the time to go down there and conduct this interview has been the most difficult action involved with the project.”

Thuland’s group has not started filming yet, but she thinks the hardest part will be trying to make a good impression during the interviews.

“We have all this equipment, all this lighting equipment, and all the microphones, the camera,” Thuland said. “We have to know how to set that all up and be professional about it. We have to show that we know what we’re doing.”

Though the project is challenging, O’Shea said the difficulties his group encountered were learning opportunities. He said struggling with equipment and out-of-focus footage taught him the importance of being prepared.

“Come with a backup plan and always prepare to expect the worst,” O’Shea said. “Then be prepared to counter that worst.”

O’Shea said the project has been a good experience.

“It’s interesting and it’s really given me an opportunity to finally go out and do something with my video production skills, rather than just standing on my own, making videos by myself,” O’Shea said.

Thuland also said she found the experience rewarding.

“The best part is being able to work with something that’s real, something that can actually be used,” Thuland said. “It’s fun being able to use the best equipment and get really good footage.”

The videos are scheduled to be finished by the end of April.


Nerissa Cauthen
Staff Writer
Published April 16, 2014