New content = new recruiting avenue

August 1, 2006

As we’re getting ready to launch a new format for talonmarks.com, we’re hoping to ramp up some new content, mostly video, podcasting and blogging. We contacted two on-campus content producer partners –the radio program and the film program–to see if we might incorporate their student-produced content on the student-produced talonmarks.com site. They both jumped at it.

In fact, film instructor Steven Hirohama, an interesting innovator himself, countered with proposal to have his students partner with Talon Marks students to create news videos as part of their class assignments. Great!

But going video has also produced a new recruiting avenue, too. I met yesterday with student Ricardo Ramirez, who once shot photos for Talon Marks, but left because his heart was in video. He’s coming back as a news videographer and was talking about recruiting some friends. He’ll be valuable, too, in helping establish video guidelines and standards for the paper, too.

We’ll be in a pickle if we get too many videographers right away. We’re just getting started and the new stuff cannot get in the way of the primary missions of producing content for the print edition and online edition. But wow! Glad our infrastructure allows for recruiting from various skill groups.

BTW: We’re one of the few community colleges in the state that have abandoned the circa 1960s version of the all-in-one newspaper class. We offer a course just for newspaper reporters, one for production/photographers and one for editors. Students can choose which or as many of the courses as they want. This allows us to market the writing class to writers and the production class to desktop designers and photographers. If we ever build a large enough population of photographers/videographers, we can split photo off from the production class (as long as we meet minimum enrollments). Takes faith by an admin to let you go that way because numbers are short the first few years, but it makes sense in the long run.


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