Being nominated for a national award recognizing journalistic talent made Bronc Radio station manager Adriana Trevino feel akin to a famous movie character.
"I felt like Charlie from 'Charlie and The Chocolate Factory,' when he won the golden ticket," said Trevino, a senior majoring in broadcast journalism at The University of Texas-Pan American.
In the Best Newscast category, Bronc Radio was nominated for "FESTIBA Special Edition," and will compete against Hofstra University, Northwestern University and Columbia College. They were also nominated as a finalist for Best Radio Public Service Announcement for "The Gallery," and will go up against productions by Marshall University, University of Texas at Arlington and University of Southern Indiana for the top honor.
Bronc TV is a finalist for Best TV News Reporting for their story "Parking Fees." Their competition includes news reports from Colorado State University, Eastern Illinois University and St. Cloud University.
"This is called 'going up against the big boys," said Fred Mann, UTPA lecturer and Bronc Radio adviser. "We are competing against radio and TV programs that have been around since the beginning of broadcasting in the 1920s. I feel so proud of my kids past and present for getting us to this level."
Mann started Bronc TV during the 2003-2004 school year with students shooting basketball games. The concept grew and the radio component was added in 2006 as a segment on KMBH radio station. In 2007, Bronc Radio began broadcasting with taped segments on the Internet. It generally has a 20-member student staff. Bronc TV has moved on as well to now shooting news stories, documentaries, promotional videos and multi-camera programming said Nick Taylor, UTPA lecturer who became the Bronc TV adviser in fall 2009. Its staff is smaller with four student leaders and other student volunteers. The website www.utpa.edu/broncradiotv/ features both Bronc Radio and Bronc TV productions.
"The experience provided by Bronc Radio/TV of on-the-job reporting, editing and writing brings the classroom to life," said Mann.
Taylor said the students in Bronc TV love what they do and perform all the tasks typical of professional broadcast journalists - pitching their story/show ideas, gathering their crews, and writing, shooting and editing the final product.
He said he was excited but not surprised about Bronc TV's nominated story.
"The story about parking fee increases at UTPA is solid, professional and entertaining journalism that deserves to be recognized. The end result was a well produced story that I feel could run on any newscast in the country," Taylor said.
Key students involved in the nominated productions were Adriana Trevino, Sasha Gomez and Larissa Garza, Bronc Radio News; Adrian Cavazos and Larissa Garza, Bronc Radio PSA; and Adriel Ortiz and Heather Arevalo, Bronc TV News Reporting.
Trevino said she thinks the pieces were nominated because "they're unique, professional and have a student vibe." Her participation in Bronc Radio, which she joined a year ago to learn how a station works, she said, has brought her more than award nominations.
"Participation in Bronc Radio has made me a leader," Trevino said. "Being a part of Bronc Radio and TV means that you are a little bit of everything - a writer, editor, photographer, a leader - and today, you need a little bit of each quality to get by in the field."
CBI is a national organization representing students involved in radio, television, webcasting and other related media ventures. CBI, along with Associated Collegiate Press and College Media Advisors, hosts the largest student media conference in the nation each year where the winners of the National Student Production Awards program will be announced. The contest is open to all campus radio stations (over-the-air, Internet and cable/closed circuit), television facilities and other student media outlets. The entries are judged by professionals in the field and journalism and mass communications faculty/staff members.
This year's CBI conference will be held Oct. 27-31 in Louisville, Ky., where more than 2,000 students are able to network and attend hundreds of professional development sessions, presentations and receive critiques of their work as well as attend a career fair.