As a girl, Alayshia Martin watched all the thrilling highlights of her favorite sport on the news and wondered, “How’d they do that?”
“As a little girl, I loved watching basketball,” Martin said. “I’d be watching the highlights come up, and they’re replaying them. I wanted to learn how to work the camera and make it look so interesting. If other people can do it, I can do it.”
As a first-year student in the Television and Radio Broadcasting program at Hinds Community College’s Utica campus, Martin is learning how the news, sports and more are put together in the modern-day, fast-paced broadcast media.
“Television and Radio Broadcasting, offered on the Utica Campus, prepares students to work in broadcast media in areas such as announcing, broadcasting control, editing, and more,” District Director of Enrollment Kathryn Cole said. “In this program, students benefit from experienced faculty and small class sizes with both classroom instruction and hands-on training.”
Registration for spring 2016 is ongoing; classes begin on Jan. 11. For information about enrolling, go to the Hinds website at www.hindscc.edu. The campus is home to 14 career-technical programs including the Television and Radio Broadcasting program, where students can earn a 2-year Associate of Applied Science degree. For information about the program, call director Tim Crisler at 601.885.7071.
Today’s visual media industries demand versatility beyond what Martin saw even just a few years ago growing up in Summit. Already an intern at a local television station as a result of the program, she’ll continue learning how to operate TV cameras, shoot video, find the best sound bites and write copy.
“You’ll be expected to shoot it, write it and post it before it even gets to the air,” Crisler said. “So, we teach a mixture, everything from writing, speaking and all the behind-the-scenes of putting together and anchoring a whole news show.”
It’s the quality cross-training that has Crisler’s students already in demand.
“All my students have internships at TV and radio stations in the Jackson market,” said Crisler, who worked in broadcasting and public relations 20 years in the Jackson area before coming to Hinds during the fall 2015 semester. “Our goal by the time they leave here is to have more experience than some university students. It’s essential to me to get them out into the industry, so that when they graduate they can walk right into a job.”
Martin and her classmates are taking full advantage of their education both in and out of the classroom.
“I didn’t know I had the capability with the equipment and the software,” she said. “I put what I learned in class into their workstation and it was interesting.
Quality time behind the lens, whether as part of the class or her internship, is priceless for Martin.
“It’s about getting the experience, then getting a good job,” she said.
Special projects and on-campus productions can include covering what’s going on at other career-tech programs on campus, among various opportunities to hone skills.
“We partner with all our departments here on campus and with career-tech to practice our production pieces,” Crisler said. “And I try to cover all six campuses, because learning about different people is part of being a good journalist.
“It’s a multimedia world, and it’s transformed to where you have to know it all. But, when you graduate, your talents will be on the level with the industry.”