Led Zeppelin greets students arriving in room 115 at the Career Center. The On the Road segment of CBS is on the smartboard ready to play, a daily tradition for the class, Broadcast TV 1, one of the many courses at the CACC that offers real-world experience. The instructor for Broadcast, Joseph Wittman, has taught the class for almost six years.
“In Broadcast Television we learn all the ins and outs of making television,” Wittman said, “so we learn how to properly use a video camera and how to edit basic video sequences together.”
He teaches students how to edit, how to anchor, how to be on camera and how to write feature stories. Wittman also mixes in fun projects including PSAs, commercials, music videos, and a television sitcom episode. Sophomore Mikayla Morgensen takes the introduction class, Broadcast TV 1, which was actually one of her alternate class requests.
“I don’t think any other class is as laid back, and [Wittman] really lets you do whatever you want, which I don’t think any other teacher really does,” Morgensen said. “He kind of just says as long as you do your work you can do whatever.”
Morgensen said her favorite project was the music video, one of the first graded in the class.
“You picked a song and picked a place around Rock Bridge or the career center,” she said. “My group chose the football field and we filmed short shots and put them together later.”
After completing two semesters of Broadcast TV 1, returning students take Broadcast 2-3. Wittman said despite his start in sport filmography for different stations, allowing him to travel with teams, including Mizzou, he prefers the work he does at the Career Center.
“When I worked for a news station, I knew I would be filming a car commercial for a certain car company every year, it got old, and it was kind of stale,” Wittman said. “With teaching I know every August I’ll meet a new group of students, and I also get to build relationships with returning students.”
When students take their second or third year broadcast class, they anchor and film feature stories for CPS 360. Wittman said he tries to go see his students if they play sports or any other extra-curricular activity to support them.
“I’m not old, but it does make me feel a little younger to talk to students about stuff and what they’re doing,” Wittman said.
Freshman Mackenzie Matheney enjoys both the class and the teacher as Wittman not only socializes with students but also listens to what’s going on in their lives.
“He makes class fun and brightens your day,” Matheney said. “He’s so positive and makes the day start off great.”
Matheney took Broadcast TV because a friend recommended it and admits it was the right choice.
“If you don’t want to do broadcast journalism in the future, you should still take the class because it’s a fun and easy class,” Matheney said.
Wittman said even if students aren’t going into broadcast journalism, the general experience doing different projects with cameras and editing allows students to thrive in the 21st Century.
“When employers see that you’ve had experience making a PSA or a commercial,” Wittman said, “they could act on those skills and favor you over another person.”