Au er Auburn Reporter burn Report Annual Newsletter
13th Annual Jay Sanders Film Festival The “Jay Sanders Film Festival” has chosen the top 10 films submitted from around the country to bring creativity to the Auburn area and showcase the talents of young filmmakers. Dr. Deron Overpeck, this year’s director of the festival, hopes that the 70-minute program of films will serve as an outlet for students to gain recognition for their hard work and talented eye for filming. Thirteen years ago, J. Emmett Winn, a professor in the department of communication and journalism, started the festival to honor professor Emeritus Jay Sanders. Sanders is responsible for bringing media studies to Auburn University and wanted to encourage more film culture at Auburn. The festival includes two categories of films, high school and college, and of the five films chosen for each category the top three will be awarded cash prizes. This year’s prizes total more than $2,500. Overpeck said that the prescreening committee looks for quality writing,
cinematography, editing and acting in the films that are submitted.
Gordon said that he has been into filmmaking since elementary school.
“But what ‘quality’ means will depend on the film,” Overpeck said. “A more abstract film may not require the same kind of editing as a narrative film. Shaky handheld camerawork might be an unacceptable distraction in one kind of film, but an invigorating aesthetic choice in another. Overall, the committee evaluates each film on its own merits, to see how it coalesces as a work of art.”
“I have always had a strong passion for creating things since I was younger,” Gordon explained. “But I gained a serious interest in film when I saw ‘Jurassic Park’ for the first time.”
John J. Gordon’s film, “A Fire in the Dark” is one of the finalists in the high school category.
Gordon will be unable to attend the festival this year because of school and senior activities.
Gordon’s film is about a girl’s experience when a burglar breaks into her home. “She dives deep into the unknown and is swallowed by a turn of events that she never saw coming,” Gordon said.
Planning for the festival starts weeks after the previous festival ends.
Gordon is a senior from R.L. Turner High School in Carrollton, Texas, and this is the second time he has entered the festival. His sophomore year of high school he won second place with his film “To the Ends of the Earth.”
This passion mixed with a small digital camera set Gordon on the path to show his creativity through the lens of a camera.
“We will set a date for the festival, discuss options with the venue management, look at drafts of the promotional material and update the Web site,” Overpeck explained. “Preparations really kick into high gear at the beginning of the spring semester when we receive the entries.” Overpeck said that this year they are working with the Auburn University Public Relations Council of Alabama, who have worked yearround to make the festival a success. The 13th annual “Jay Sanders Film Festival” will be held in the Dixon Conference Center in the theater auditorium on Thursday, April 15. It is a free event for all audiences, however, the films do contain adult themes and language, and it is advised for parents to be careful upon bringing children. For more on the festival, visit auburn.edu/ filmfestival. by Hallie Van Dyke
“It was November 1995, after the Iron Bowl. Not even kidding. I watched it on ESPN and I really liked the announcer. The announcer was Ron Franklin. Even at 6 years old I knew that that is what I wanted to do,” Condon explained.
A Familiar Voice: Jack Condon Auburn softball’s lead play-by-play announcer Before learning his time tables, who Romeo and Juliet were and which states were in the Confederacy, Jack Condon knew he was meant to learn how to be a sports announcer. Unlike many well-know prodigies, this Montgomery native wasn’t 2 years old when he found his calling. He was 6 years old. “It was November 1995, after the Iron Bowl. Not even kidding. I watched it on ESPN and I really liked the announcer. The announcer was Ron Franklin. Even at 6 years old I knew that that is what I wanted to do,” Condon explained. Franklin is still his favorite announcer today. “He still does games rarely on ESPN and ABC. He doesn’t just call the game, he makes it into a story,” Condon said. Condon, 21, is a junior in Radio/Television/ Film and started his broadcasting career with WEGL. His freshman year he had radio sports show and that summer he also added a music show. Through a co-worker at WEGL, Condon was connected to ISP Sports Network. After working various jobs with the ISP Sports Network for the past two years, including technical and radio assignments, Condon was assigned to the Auburn softball team. His childhood dream was becoming more of a reality, and he found he had a natural talent for it. “I didn’t realize I was good at it until I announced my first softball game,” Condon explained. “Auburn was playing Georgia State. When I went back to the studio to return all of the equipment, my co-workers told me that I was actually very good.”
Today, along with keeping a full course load, Condon is the lead play-by-play announcer for Auburn’s softball team and travels with them to every game. Each week he gets to practice his skills and master his talent of remembering facts on the spot. “Right now [my most valuable skills in broadcasting] are knowledge and how I’m able to not get tongue-tied, which important especially when announcing sports,” Condon said. “You don’t want to get behind on a play. I’m also able to remember stats, past games and player names easily.” When asked which football game Condon would have loved to announce he replied, “I could say a huge national championship
game, but in all actuality I would have to say the Auburn versus LSU game in 2004. It was such a tense atmosphere and it would’ve been great to let the crowd do the talking which is something that can be advantageous to an announcer. That game built up to a great finish. Auburn won 10-9.” Condon is scheduled to graduate in May 2011. He hopes to continue obtaining jobs as a sports announcer working his way to college or professional football. He understands the patience and time it will take to work up this ladder and is committed to following his childhood dream.
by Hallie Van Dyke
Going Over and Beyond
Jane Teel meets students’ needs beyond the expected “The opportunity to teach a class gives me that time in the classroom environment enabling me to relate to students on a different level. It also keeps me linked with other faculty that I otherwise would not be in contact with,” says Teel. Teel has now also been advising for five years and in October, Teel will be promoted to Adviser III, the highest level for advisers. Advising, especially around registration times, is extremely time-consuming. Teel juggles different people and situations, yet still takes the time to focus on the individual student. Organization is the key to her efficiency. “I definitely work well with structure. I like to know the plan,” says Teel.
Jane Teel does not consider her job to be just a paycheck or occupational title, she has been on staff with Auburn University for 12 years as a professor and adviser for the Department of Communication and Journalism.
When students come to Teel for advising, she takes the time to go through the pros and cons of different class routes they could possibly take. She maintains positivity in her advising and speaks words of encouragement inspiring students to rise to the challenges school can bring.
Teel also has a list of other responsibilities in the communication and journalism department including but not limited to: enrollment management, orientation for new people in all four majors of the department, meeting prospective and transfer students, representative on Talons Day, managing the on-line wish lists, publicity needs for the department, and organizing the graduation day reception. Most importantly, above all of these responsibilities, Teel is a wife and a mother to two children. She is also an Auburn graduate, as well has her husband, children and most all of her extended family. Along with teaching and advising, she is also working on her doctorate in education, and hoping to complete it by next spring. Teel clearly has a full plate. Despite that, she does her job, and she does her job well. by Brook Glassford
Anna Houk works for CATS
Creating a promising future for the College of Liberal Arts Anna Houk, interviews Auburn alumni to assist her fellow students in pursuing a successful future while improving the College of Liberal Arts [CLA] as the assbassador of Connecting Alumni to Students or CATS, CATS is an “innovative method of reaching graduates through bright, talented students, and by participating in the CATS Initiative, CLA alumni are not only furthering the mission of the College of Liberal Arts, but also adding value to the education our students receive by sharing their wisdom and real-life experiences” (noodletools.com off of CLA website). Houk, a senior from Huntsville, Ala., is Miss Auburn 2009, extremely involved in the university’s affairs, and she is an ambassador for CATS along with 10 other students. Without the abassadors, CATS would not be
effective or efficient. As an ambassador, Houk is in direct contact CLA alumni around the state, mainly in Huntsville. Once the contact is made and a meeting time is set, Houk travels to the location of the professional to conduct a one-on-one interview with the Auburn alum. During the interview, Houk asks the professional questions about their college experience, their path since graduation, and what CLA means to them. Houk conducts most of her contact work in Huntsville, but together the 10 ambassadors have conducted more than 100 interviews with AU alumni in the areas of Birmingham, Montgomery, Atlanta, Auburn and Opelika. “I have found this program is a good way for liberal arts to improve and get better in areas that we may slack on,” Houk said. “I ask the
professionals to offer suggestions of how they feel CLA could improve. We are eager to take their responses into consideration.” If you are a professional and an alumni of Auburn University’s College of Liberal Arts and you are interested in being interviewed by a CATS ambassador please visit the website at www.media.cla.auburn.edu/cla/ CATS/index.cfm. by Meg Beasley
Alumnus Achieves Life Goal The Road to Becoming a Press Secretary
Auburn University alumnus, Todd Stacy, graduate in 2006 with a degree in Public Relations. During college, he jokingly set a goal for himself to become a press secretary by the time he was 25 years old. Not only did he achieve the goal he set for himself, Stacy has excelled in his field by working for the Governor of Alabama, Bob Riley. Stacy has been Governor Bob Riley’s press secretary for a year and half. He is responsible for keeping in touch with the media, arranging news conferences and writing speeches among other things. His job requires a lot of multi-tasking in order to keep everyone involved happy. “Sometimes it is difficult to manage so many things at once,” Stacy said. Stacy has only had a few years of experience on the job compared to other people he works with who have decades of experience. He does not consider the amount of experience as a setback; instead it makes him work harder to be the best he can be. Stacy uses his strong knowledge of politics and public relations skills he learned while in college to carry out his job everyday. “There are too many experiences, skills, things I’ve picked up in my college career that help me today,” Stacy said. He has contributed to the governor’s press office a lot. Stacy’s main contribution came from what he learned in Robert French’s Style and Design class. He re-designed the governor’s Web site and started a Facebook page.
Todd Stacy givies advice to people interested in politics and how to stand out when looking for any kind of job. Stacy also purchased a camera to shoot, then edited video, to distributed it to news stations so that their message can be delivered exactly they way the want it to be. He uses a process called FTP (File Transfer Protocol) to post his videos online. As a result of Stacy’s efforts, he has increase the number of media impressions on the governor’s Web site. In other words, more people around the world, especially those in Alabama are receiving the governor’s message directly from him through the Internet.
The governor’s term ends Jan. 12, 2011, which gives Stacy nine and half months left to work and learn as much as he can in a busy office. Stacy plans to stay in politics, but he has to work for someone with integrity. When asked if he would ever like to become an elected official, Stacy said, “I’m a little better off behind the scenes.” by Kelly Young