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Back-to-School starts with production truck training

crewStudents enrolled in Telecom's television production classes get to start school early. And while that may not sound appealing to a lot of teenagers, a crash course in broadcasting a live event from a remote production truck is a bit more enticing.

Remote Video Production Training is held the week before school starts, and it prepares students to work on live broadcasts of high-school football games.

Each football season, NNPS-TV (Cox Channel 47 and Verizon FiOS Channel 17) broadcasts a few games live from Todd Stadium, and the students play important roles in those telecasts.

Remote Video Production Training generally consists of four days at the Telecommunications Center and in the remote video production truck.  The fourth day extends into the night, as it includes a production practice game at Todd Stadium.

trainingStudents are first-year TV Production I students and second-year TV Production II students who are interested in working on various shoots during the school year. The returning students already have plenty of experience under their belts, but are required to have this refresher before the broadcasts start.

Students apply for the various jobs that are available for a particular production.  Hiring for remote production positions is based on participation in the training sessions, auditions, job performance and work ethic.

Crew positions include:  Camera Operators, Technical Director, Character Generator, VTR/ DDR Operator (Replay), Audio Operator, ENG (Electronic News Gathering) Editor, Reporter, Announcer, and Assistant Producer. As many as 15 students are employed for football and basketball games. 

2013 Training
Remote Production Training Camp is Monday, August 26 – Thursday, August 29. Hours are 9 a.m. – 1 p.m at the Telecom Center. Tuesday will include on-location training during taping of Fuzion Fitness at City Center. Thursday from 3 - 8 p.m. is a production practice game at Todd Stadium (kickoff is at 5 p.m.).

The jobs are paid internships, and therefore desirable to teenagers for more reasons than job experience and training. Hard work is required, and sometimes the hours are long.

Telecom Supervisor Ray Price and Instructor Carl Daniels, Jr. run the training, giving tours of the building and the production truck, showing recorded football games, demonstrating how to properly roll audio and camera cables, plus giving specific training on the equipment used in the various crew positions. Besides video cameras, tripods and microphones, this technical equipment includes: the character generator, digital disk recorder, video switcher, and audio console.

Production Truck Jobs
Student jobs for remote TV broadcasts

NNPS-TV Station Engineer Bryan Catlin guides students through the more technical aspects of the training, educating students who aim to become technicians and engineers. NNPS-TV sports announcer and "Sports Highlights" host Greg Bicouvaris helps train on-air talent (announcers and reporters).

Besides sports, remote TV productions include awards ceremonies, occasional performances, all six high school graduation ceremonies, and nearby Christopher Newport University's commencement exercises.

This year's training also includes on-location training during the recording of "Fuzion Fitness" at City Center.