Student-Produced College Town Spot to Play on Big Screen

Published 06.01.2006

Student News

College Town initiative featured in movie-screen ad.As a part of the ongoing efforts of the College Town Committee, a few local college students in Williamsport have developed a 15-second College Town ad to be shown on the big screen at the Great Escape Theatre next to the Lycoming Mall in Pennsdale.

Unique Screen Media, one of the largest screen-advertising media companies in America, approached the Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce with the opportunity for complimentary screen time on the screens at Great Escape.

Jason C. Fink, the chamber's executive vice president, jumped at the opportunity to make use of the screen time.

"In looking at the demographics of the theater attendees, it was my thought that College Town would be a good fit for our initial promotion," Fink said. "It seemed only appropriate that, since we were doing a commercial spot on College Town, that we incorporate the talents of local college students in producing the spot."

The College Town initiative is an ongoing effort to bring the community and businesses of Williamsport together with the city's three institutions of higher education: Lycoming College, Newport Business Institute and Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Penn College students Brenton Kelly and Julie Reppert, who both graduated in May with associate degrees in mass media communication, aided in the development of the ad.

Kelly spent a great deal of time shooting and editing the project and said he was excited when asked to be a part of the development of the ad.

"My favorite part of the project was not only getting to work with some students from the other (schools), but also getting to use the new HDV (high-definition video) camera and having the chance to create something in high definition," he said.

"I have been involved with the College Town initiative for quite some time now... as a member of the College Town Committee and serving as the chair to the Student Subcommittee this past school year," Reppert said. "So, when I was asked to contribute my talents to the project, I didn't hesitate."

"I enjoyed interacting with and seeing the students work together on this project," said Bruce E. Huffman, instructor of media arts and video production. "They had to take some specific requirements from the chamber, formulate their own ideas, shoot the necessary footage and create a finished product that incorporates the message of College Town."

"With a 15-second ad, it was a real challenge, but they pulled it off to create an excellent product that will be seen by thousands of people," Huffman added. "Projects like these give the students a chance to take their classroom learning experiences and apply them to practical, real-world situations."

"My experience was great working with the other students," Kelly said. "I think that more projects like this should be available in the future."

Fink says the chamber hopes this ad will help all Williamsport residents, from high school students to older members of the community, see how college students benefit the local area.

"We want our community to appreciate that we are a college town, even though we might not fully understand what that means to our residents and those businesses that may be able to benefit from the economic buying power that local college students bring to the area," he said.

The student-produced spot can be viewed beginning in mid-June and will run for six months through mid-October.

For more information about College Town, visit online .