The Graduation Experience

Del Oro High School’s class of 2015 graduated on Saturday morning at 8am.  The morning was beautiful and the ceremony was close to perfect.  Speeches were delivered, hands were shaken, diplomas were handed over, and there were smiles on nearly every face.

My student media team had to deal with lots of moving parts in order to capture the event, and as they packed up equipment after the ceremony, we reflected on how it all seemed to come together to make for a memorable morning.  While the seniors and their families were focused on embracing and enjoying the moment, my freshmen, sophomores, and juniors were doing this:

  • Setting up a Go Pro time lapse on the roof of the Eagle’s Nest at 4:45AM to capture the sunrise and ceremony
  • Getting press box and field cameras setup at 6AM in order to switch between a wide shot of the entire event and close ups on each student receiving a diploma
  • Troubleshooting audio and video issues as they started playing the “Senior Says” on the big screen at 7am.  The “Senior Says” are pre-recorded and edited videos of each senior thanking parents, teachers, counselors, etc.
  • Starting the livestream at 7:15AM so that we could not only broadcast the ceremony live to the internet, but also show it live in the air-conditioned gym.  The technology on this piece got a bit mixed up but my students were able to troubleshoot the issue and get it resolved just in time.
  • Getting the drone in the air at 7:45AM to film some of the graduates walking in and the first part of the ceremony.
  • Switching live video with a 3 camera setup from 8AM-9:30Am to capture the band, the choir, the speeches, the graduates, and the crowd.
  • Getting the drone back in the air near the end of the ceremony 9:30AM to record the hat throw.
  • After finishing packing up all of the equipment by 10:30AM, students were back in my lab starting on the ceremony edit to put on the Year at a Glance DVD that will ship today.

My students are amazing.  They make my job so much fun.

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