Forward Thinking

forward thinking

Any television program, film or professional video requires individuals who work behind the scenes to make the project a success.

The new Digital Video Production program at Community College of Philadelphia offers students the chance to prepare for a fast-paced career as part of a video production crew as a videographer, audio technician, lighting technician, video editor, director or producer. This program moves beyond courses already offered at the College in video production and enables students to pursue opportunities at TV stations or in theatre groups. Graduates may also work as a freelancer for production companies or start their own business as a wedding or event videographer.

The curriculum was developed by the College’s Allan Kobernick, director of Multimedia Services; Geoffrey Berken, professor of Photographic Imaging and department head; and Jon Spielberg, assistant professor of Photographic Imaging. Kobernick used his vast work and experience in the field to determine what skills students need to enter this competitive field. He attended film school, worked as part of a production crew on several feature films and operated his own production company for 20 years. A former associate professor and department head of Photography, Kobernick returned to the College in 2008.

“I understand what skills students need to be successful as a cameraman, editor and producer,” he said.

In the first year, students will receive the strong technical foundation necessary for performing a number of tasks, such as camera operation, lighting, audio acquisition and editing. The second year, students focus on the creative and aesthetic skills required for the field.

One of the advanced courses that students can take in their final semester is studio production, which requires them to create and air a show. Throughout the course, students will take on multiple tasks and rotate positions, allowing them to experience the responsibilities of each role in a production crew.

“The students will be wearing different hats all of the time, preparing for a career and getting work experience,” said Kobernick. “Being on a film crew requires that they learn to be good team members who are able to apply their skills whenever and wherever they are needed.”

The shows created by students will air on the College’s cable education channel, CCPTV, of which Kobernick is the producer. Graduates will leave the College with a digital portfolio of their work for transfer or employment purposes.

The program will provide students with the necessary skills to pursue further studies in film or digital video production, but they are ready to enter the workforce upon graduation.

“The goal is for graduates of the program to have the qualifications and experience to be hired as a functioning member of a production crew,” said Kobernick.