Conestoga news

May 16, 2012 9:54 AM

Student series wins national award

Conestoga Connected, a series produced by students in the Broadcast Television program at Conestoga College, has been awarded first place in the “Video - Series Special” category from the Broadcast Educators Association of Canada (BEAC).

The 8-week, half-hour series was recognized by judges as a “very slick and professional production,” and ranked above all other student productions from colleges and universities across the country.

The award will be presented at the BEAC National Conference Students Awards Gala in Ottawa on May 26. The senior student producers are second-year students Connor Cheeseman, Katy Martel and Tija Smith and the show’s host is second-year student Mike Zakrzewski.

“I’m just thrilled that the students have received this recognition for their hard work and commitment to the program,” said Professor Rachelle Cooper, executive producer of Conestoga Connected.

The series began as a project in the Writer-Producer specialization course four years ago. “It began as a web broadcast and is now shown on Rogers TV several times a week throughout Southwestern Ontario,” Cooper said.

In its current form, Conestoga Connected also involves students in the Electronic News Gathering-Videographer stream of the program as well as Conestoga’s Graphic Design students, who created the set designs.

BEAC judges praised the opening and flow of the stories, the camera work and the editing displayed in the winning program.

“I think the project has been so successful because it’s such a collaborative effort that enables students draw from their different strengths…from performing on camera to animation and web design, to sending out tweets about the show, to chasing stories and composing great shots,” said Cooper.

All eight Conestoga Connected episodes can be seen online at or on Rogers TV on Sundays at 10:30 a.m. and 10 p.m., Tuesdays at 1 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. and Thursdays at 5 p.m.