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New Media Lab Boosts MC Communication Department

MC students are already making extensive use of the Communication Department's new media lab.
MC students are already making extensive use of the Communication Department's new media lab.

Mississippi College’s new media lab continues to generate positive buzz among students on the Clinton campus.

Located in the basement of the Aven Fine Arts Building, the media lab makes its debut as an invaluable teaching tool for the Department of Communication. It offers studio space for students to create podcasts, build portfolios, edit video, conduct broadcast interviews and embrace future media changes.

“We genuinely thank the anonymous donor and all who worked to make this dream a reality,” Communication Department Chairman Cliff Fortenberry said.

Fortenberry joins colleagues raving about the facility since it opened in late August. ”It equips the Communication Department and the campus to display a tangible commitment to student learning.”

A few feet from other MC classrooms, the lab is situated in the former WHJT, and Star 93.5 radio station space. The lab on the building’s ground floor offers “a tremendous boost to the Communication Department, communication students and Mississippi College,” Fortenberry added.

MC students like Corey Rhoden, sports editor of the “Mississippi Collegian” share the professor’s sentiments. “It’s nice to have a first-class space where students can come, be comfortable and work together on projects for class or for The Collegian.”

A senior from Kenner, Louisiana, Rhoden expects to spend countless hours in the media lab before his college graduation rolls around. He’s been busy lately since the student newspaper’s first issue of MC’s 193rd academic year rolled off the presses September 4.

A Mississippi College student who works with MCTV, Josh Clark is impressed by the lab’s benefits. It’s more than new tables, chairs and the latest computers in a renovated room.

“The new media lab is really helpful for editing MCTV stories,” Clark said. “And the lab studio is the perfect spot for putting together podcasts. Communication students will put in many hours during the Fall semester in these new rooms.”

MCTV videos broadcast university news stories such as this summer’s arrival of President Blake Thompson. The Communication Department station offers timely updates of Choctaws athletic events and regularly showcases student-oriented features.

Fortenberry sees the lab as the spot for students to access equipment allowing them to build unique professional production portfolios essential to landing jobs.

Professor Reid Vance says the lab is equipped quite well for instructional use serving two dozen students at a time. Each of the lab’s 12 iMac workstations features the latest Adobe Creative Cloud software for video, photo and production along with editing and distribution.

The lab, Vance said, becomes the go-to space where students will enhance their public speaking skills to meet the demands of a competitive marketplace. “Students will be able to conveniently record their speeches and review them to identify areas of solid performance and needed improvement.”

A display monitor allows student presenters to blend visuals into their work. The back of the area in a separate room will serve as an audio/radio production lab.

Communication Department leaders predict the new media lab will become a popular destination point for alumni, parents and students, especially during MC’s 2018 Homecoming. Activities on the Clinton campus are booked October 26-27.