Eight high school students are attending a different kind of “Boot Camp” this week and next, at the University of Nevada, Reno. The students were chosen through a competitive application process to be participants in the first Smallwood Foundation Multimedia Boot Camp, where they are receiving rigorous instruction and hands-on experience in a wide range of media and research activities at the University’s award-winning Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center, one of the most technologically advanced university libraries in the country.
The students, who will all be high school seniors this fall, will make use of the full range of multimedia equipment and software provided in the Knowledge Center’s @One area, including the use of state-of-the-art media facilities. They will receive concentrated instruction in audio, video and media editing skills using Final Cut Pro, Flash, iMovie, Camtasia, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe After Effects. In professional-level projects, they will learn how to shoot video with HD camcorders, integrate images, develop informative posters, create 2D and 3D animation, and use recording room technologies.
The Boot Camp is provided free of charge to the students, thanks to a grant from the Frances C. and William P. Smallwood Foundation, which is also going to provide a two-year $2,500 annual scholarship to attend the University to the student exhibiting the most potential. This student, who will be named the “Smallwood Foundation Scholar,” will also be given a paid job at the Knowledge Center’s @One multimedia area during his or her undergraduate career at the University. All of the students who attend the Boot Camp will also be allowed to use the Knowledge Center and all it has to offer throughout their senior year in high school.
This is the first year of the new pilot program, which, besides providing a learning experience for the students, is also aimed at spreading the word among high school students about what the University of Nevada, Reno has to offer.
“The Knowledge Center just impresses everyone who steps through its doors,” said Kathy Ray, dean of University Libraries. “It is such a terrific resource for our students that we believe exposing high school students to the Knowledge Center will help them realize all this University has to offer, and will aid in recruitment efforts.”
Mark Gandolfo, manager of Media Design and Production for the past 13 years, serves as co-director of the boot camp, with Daniel Fergus, media production specialist. Gandolfo has produced national and international award-winning productions, including film, video and multimedia projects.
Besides becoming familiarized with the Knowledge Center and learning from the Center’s faculty and staff, students will also have the opportunity to receive instruction from a variety of other accomplished University faculty and staff, such as:
- Peter Goin, professor in the Art Department, whose photographs have been exhibited in more than 50 museums nationally and internationally and whose video work has earned him an EMMY nomination.
- Tom Gordon, recording arts instructor from the Music Department, who has worked with artists such as Boyz II Men, Collective Soul and Willie Nelson.
- Ray Silva, recording engineer in the Teaching and Learning Technologies Department, who has worked on projects for artists Queen Latifah, Tupac and Sting, and on films including Vanilla Sky and Spiderman.
- Joe DeLappe, associate professor in the Art Department, who has worked with new media since 1983, and whose work in online gaming performance and electromechanical installation has been shown throughout the United States and abroad, as well as featured in The New York Times.
- Larry Dailey, from the University’s Reynolds School of Journalism, who has been a multimedia producer for MSNBC Interactive, and a picture editor for the Associated Press and United Press International.
- Steven D. Zink, vice chancellor of Information Technology for the Nevada System of Higher Education, who has authored and edited several books and serves on the Advisory Committee for the Records of the U.S. Congress.
The Boot Camp is held 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., June 13-17 and June 20-23, with lunch noon – 1 p.m. each day. For more information, go to Smallwood Media Boot Camp Facebook page.