Tag Archive | "superbowl"

A weekend with the pros

In the realm of sports media, working for ESPN is a dream for aspiring broadcasters, producers, journalists and many others. This stays a dream for most, but a select few receive the opportunity to work with one of the top sports networks. Indiana Wesleyan University student Matt Lippman (sr) is among the few.

Lippman, a media communication major, worked at the NFL Scouting Combine Feb. 27-29 in Indianapolis. Indianapolis-based satellite uplinking company Midwest Uplink hired him as a freelancer for the weekend. This company links video and audio to television networks that need footage of an event. Lippman said he usually shoots video, but ESPN wanted him to collect audio for the combine.

“So, whenever I go do a shoot, I have no idea what I’m going to do,” Lippman said. “I just go in and just be willing to put myself out there and really just do anything.”

After an internship last summer, Lippman said he started to enjoy freelance television. He interned with a freelance videographer who had worked with Midwest Uplink. Through that internship, Lippman gained contacts that ended up hiring him for the combine.

“Whenever I go to these different shoots and I have my connections from my internship, whether it’s with cameramen or whether it’s with audio, when it comes down to it, they are great people,” Lippman said. “They teach me because they know that I’m just starting out, and they know I’m not supposed to know everything right now.”

Dr. Randall King, IWU’s Communication Division Chair, said students getting these chances to do freelance has occurred sporadically in the past, but Lippman received an exceptional opportunity.

“Matt has really grown, particularly in the last year, and his internship was a big part of that,” King said. “As a visual storyteller, he’s really grown as far as being able to understand what’s needed and just take good direction.”

Throughout the combine, Lippman captured audio for press conferences, live shoots of events and analyst discussions. Some of the ESPN analysts that he worked with included Adam Shefter, Todd McShay and Chris Mortenson. Lippman said working with well-known television analysts was shocking and surreal at first. After getting over this shock, he said that it was all business.

“We had live hits probably every 30 minutes or an hour,” Lippman said. “It just depends when ESPN needs something or whenever there’s a big conference going on of Andrew Luck or any of the other top prospects.”

In addition to Luck, Lippman worked on set when Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III had an interview with the analysts. He said working with the analysts and players while still being in college turned into a great opportunity, as well as a fun one.

“One of the coolest things that I would probably say is just being able to be in the press conference room because there were maybe about 200 to 300 cameras in there,” Lippman said. “It was just a cool aspect to see everything behind the scenes. What you are seeing on TV is totally different than what’s happening in actually real life.”

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Students fight sex trafficking

In an effort to fight human trafficking, a nonprofit group collected donations to purchase bars of soap with the national trafficking hotline number on them to be placed in hotels in Indianapolis during the week of the Super Bowl, which took place Feb. 5.

The money being raised was to be given to “Save Our Adolescents from Prostitution,” a project started in Columbus, Ohio, by Theresa Flores, a human trafficking victim.

According to Indystar.com, Flores went into a hotel bathroom after what she described as her “worst moment” and washed with a bar of soap. She had been blackmailed into prostitution by an inner-city Detroit gang as a teenager.

Years later, recalling that episode, Flores began to distribute free bars of soap to hotels with the national trafficking hotline number on them, in the hopes that victims of human trafficking would call the number and be rescued.

At Indiana Wesleyan University, a group of students is very active in anti-human trafficking measures. The group began under the name Viva Voce. In 2010 the group hosted an anti-trafficking day in downtown Marion. A senior adviser to George W. Bush on human trafficking was a speaker at that event.

Kirsten Miller, a (sr) social work student, remembered the event and said she was “blown away” by what God was doing.

“It just goes to show that the subject is close to God’s heart,”  said Amy Yoder, a senior psychology major and member of IWU’s anti-trafficking group. “He [God] took it beyond our dreams and imagination.”

Since 2010 the group has dropped the Viva Voce name and is now under the umbrella of Doulos, a social justice organization on campus. The dean of chapel’s office and the Prayer Furnace have also provided support for anti-trafficking efforts on campus. Doulos is planning a benefit concert April 13 to raise money for anti-sex trafficking efforts.

Sex trafficking is not the only form of human trafficking that takes place. Other forms include “forced labor, bonded labor, debt bondage among migrant workers, involuntary domestic slavery, forced child labor … organ trafficking and child soldiers,” according to the FBI website.

“A lot of trafficking victims in the U.S. are from the U.S. They’re not just brought in from other countries,” Miller said.

“There is a strong correlation between missing and exploited children and underage sex trafficking”, according to Linda Smith, founder of Washington-based Shared Hope International.

Doulos is considering starting a chapter of International Justice Mission. The purpose for such a group would be to continue to raise awareness and join people together in fighting human trafficking.

Miller listed a number of ways that students can get involved in anti-trafficking measures.  Some suggestions she made were to learn more about the subject, help raise awareness, attend the upcoming benefit concert, consider joining the International Justice Mission (should the group decide to start a chapter) and pray.

“Sometimes we underestimate the power of prayer.” said Miller. “But it’s more powerful than we can ever realize.”

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The Wildcard: the one with Jenn Goethel

Not much can be said about the Super Bowl that hasn’t already been stated and restated ad absurdum. For Indiana locals, this year’s event was even more hyped than usual, as the big game was held in Indianapolis. As is custom, many of the biggest names in sports and entertainment were in attendance: Drew Brees, Matthew Stafford, Jeff Gordon, Alec Baldwin, Carrie Underwood and Indiana Wesleyan University student Jenn Goethel (jr).

Goethel, a public relations major, spent the two weeks leading up to Super Bowl XLVI working for NFL Experience 2012. A company which puts on events surrounding the game for an inside look at all things Super Bowl, a football amusement park held at the Indiana Convention Center. Goethel’s job was an operations manager, supervising a specific section of the event, dealing with everything from directing patrons to cleaning up after sick children.

Needless to say, she has some interesting stories.

Jeremy Sharp: Were you at the game?

Jenn Goethel: Yeah, there was a huge group of people and we just wanted to see how far the passes could go, so we definitely got to the front section. People were loving it. Because hey, it’s the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl game, why not?

JS: I know you have some good stories …

JG: I met Mike Greenwald, the “Mike and Mike” guy, in the elevator. I asked him why he was here, not even knowing who he was. I get on the elevator and I just saw this guy taking a picture with people and I wondered who he was. And he looks at me, I’m in full work attire, and he goes, “So why are you here? You here for the big game?” And I look at him and I’m like, “Yeah, I’m kinda working it.” And he goes, “OK.” And I go, “You?” And he goes, “Yeah, I’m kind of working it too. I’m an ESPN sports analyst.” The next day I was talking to my dad and he goes, “You are an idiot.”

JS: How’s this job going to help you in your future?

JG: I’m getting so much out of it already. It really developed my communication skills because you had to be clear and concise with whoever you were talking to. Also, respecting the athletes and not being able to ask for an autograph and not being able to take pictures and keeping professional. That’s where the lines were drawn. Are you in it to meet the athletes or are you in it because you love it? And I discovered that I was in it just ‘cause I love it, not because I need the autograph. I mean yeah, I got some cool stories, but you know when they say, “Do what you love and love what you do,” I found the perfect job.

JS: Are you going to keep working there?

JG: What happens is, I can look at them and continue on for the next two Super Bowls. They kind of have a travelling team. Not everybody that works for them works for them all year round. We have the opportunity to keep travelling with them to New Orleans next year and New York City the year after, so hopefully we’ll see how everything pans out. But yeah, it’s looking like that might be in the works.

JS: One more cool story.

JG: It was close to closing time and all of the sudden I hear, “Somebody just got a bloody nose on the Lombardi Trophy, can we get somebody out here to clean it up?” The Lombardi Trophy is in a case, but there had already been a joke a few days before that somebody puked on the Lombardi, so I wasn’t sure if this was a joke. But from the panic ensuing in the manager’s voice, somebody had literally gotten a bloody nose on the Lombardi Trophy. So we can’t figure out if the kid ran into the trophy or what. People were freaking out because you can’t get blood on the Lombardi Trophy.

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BlueBridge Digital: They’ll make an app for that

Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis marked the first time NBC streamed video coverage of the game live online and to mobile devices. But NBC and the NFL were not alone in their use of mobile media when the big game brought a swell of economic activity to central Indiana.

BlueBridge Digital, a new business owned and operated by a group of students and alumni from Indiana Wesleyan University, developed the mobile application “Visit Kokomo,” which launched in the iTunes App Store Feb. 2, just three days before kickoff. Contracted by the Kokomo Visitors Bureau, “Visit Kokomo” is BlueBridge’s biggest contract yet.

“We went against three big companies from Indianapolis that have offices and 50 employees, and we beat them all for the contract,” said Santiago Jaramillo (sr), BlueBridge’s owner.

Jaramillo started BlueBridge in May 2011 after a summer job opportunity fell through.

“I didn’t want to take a step back and work McDonald’s or something, so I decided to give [selling apps] a shot,” said Jaramillo. After three months of hard work in Indianapolis, he hadn’t made any money.

Despite not achieving immediate success, Jaramillo said he stuck with it because he knew the market for apps is currently the wave to catch. He said a major shift in the way people consume information occurred in 2011.

“For the first time in the history of the Internet, more people accessed information and spent more time on their mobile device than on their desktop computer,” said Jaramillo.

Things started to heat up around October when BlueBridge launched an Occupy Wall Street app that provided an aggregated stream of news for those wanting to learn about the movement. It received 15,000 downloads as a free app.

Jaramillo saw the success, made a version with more features and sold it for $1.99. This deluxe version of the app was featured in the iPad app store.

Next came a deal with a company from California called Debt-Proof Living. BlueBridge was hired to design an app that presented a daily personal finance tip called “Everyday Cheapskate.”

In December, Jaramillo began assembling his dream team of designers, developers and marketers, including current IWU students Dawson Goodell (sr), Jacob Millage (fr) and Aaron Cecil (so).

“I’m pretty lucky. All I am is connecting a bunch of geniuses,” said Jaramillo.

Together, the team launched four Super Bowl apps for visitors to Indianapolis. “Indy Eats” contains information for a large selection of restaurants in the city. “Indy Night Life” is an app for live music venues, bars, Super Bowl parties and other Circle City entertainment. “Indy Transportation” informs visitors of street-closures, city maps and shuttle information. “We Love Indy,” the most popular of the four apps, is a “best of Indianapolis” app providing places to stay, places to eat and events to attend.

Those four apps made the top-five Super Bowl apps on the iTunes App Store.

Cecil, social media coordinator for BlueBridge, worked closely with the Super Bowl apps. A member of the band Of Sights & Sounds, Cecil said he uses similar marketing techniques for his band and for BlueBridge.

“I got a lot of experience from [my band], so it helps me promote stuff online for BlueBridge and the Super Bowl apps pretty efficiently and effectively,” said Cecil.

Marketing Director Ryan Krueger (alumnus ‘11) said he admires Jaramillo’s entrepreneurship. Despite living in Ohio, Krueger said he would continue to work with BlueBridge if future opportunities come his way.

“Something that’s nice about BlueBridge is that it’s a company that can manage and work without having a physical office. Basically we can communicate through phone, through email and even Skype and completely just work everything via the clouds,” said Krueger.

BlueBridge is currently working on closing more deals for apps, one of which is focuses on visiting Grant County and another for the Wesleyan Publishing House.

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