Loyalist College Television and New Media Production students are beginning the second season of the unique video production initiative called News From the Home Front. The project concept was created last year by Paul Lyons, President of Information to Decisions Inc., to provide soldiers who are posted away from their families with a video clip of family events. It could be a birthday party, taking the kids to school, or simply a captured moment that briefly lets them share the daily family activities that are so often taken for granted. The purpose is twofold — a message of love and affection from the family, and a message to all members of the Canadian Forces that we care, appreciate them and are proud of them.
Jodi Cooper is the producer for the project. She is entering her third year of the College’s Television and New Media Production program. “Working with the News From The Home Front families has been really rewarding. It’s so nice to be doing something so meaningful — you can really see how much this means to the families by the look on their faces as they’re giving their message to their loved ones. You can’t help feeling touched by being a part of something so moving, and so relevant in Canadian society today. My career goal is to be a producer and being able to add this experience to my résumé, especially with the College and Military connection, I feel will really give me the extra edge I need.”
The students delivered this year’s first completed DVD to Sherry Waldon from Trenton. The team spent three days with her, capturing moments at her home, the Trenton dog park, with friends and even at the mall. The DVD was created for Cpl. Thomson, who is currently waiting to return home from Dubai.
“I think it’s great that they are doing this,” said Sherry Waldon. “It’s something so special and it was a lot of fun to do. I’m really happy to be able to give this special gift to the man I love. It’s also nice to know that people support our troops and that they care not only for them, but for their families as well.”
Kathleen Bazkur is the Loyalist faculty contact for the students. “This is definitely a celebration of technology,” she said. “It’s lovely for the families and friends and such a fulfilling project. To see the students having such a great time doing it is very gratifying. It’s really about people connecting with people and a wonderful way to touch the lives of others.”
“The families are absolutely delighted with the project,” said Eve Lawrence from the Trenton Military Family Resource Centre. “I’ve just watched the first DVD the students have completed this year and it is excellent. One of the upcoming projects is for a dad who is leaving two weeks prior to a high school graduation. He knows that although he will be unable to be there in person, he will still be able share the evening. One of the people who received a DVD last year told us that not only did he play the video over and over and over again — but that it was something he will keep and treasure forever.”
The three-year Television and New Media Production program is unique in the province, teaching skills from television production to DVD authoring and web streaming. The College is also excited to be offering a three-year Broadcast Engineering Technology program commencing in September. Graduates of the new program with a B average or higher will be certified with the Society of Broadcast Engineers Inc. — expanding their career opportunities throughout North America. For more information visit click here.