Macaulay Students Learn TV Production Skills at NY Comic Con

In late September, Macaulay student Christine Berrios ’13 (Hunter and freelance production assistant, WNET) and Matthew Chao (freelance associate producer and editor, WNET) approached the Friends of THIRTEEN with an unprecedented project. They planned to produce WNET’s first segments about New York Comic Con, the East Coast’s largest pop culture event, and to do it with the help of two Macaulay students with no previous experience in media production.

With support from the Friends of THIRTEEN and assistance from friends and project associate producers Mikyle Yuvienco ’12 (Hunter) and Julianne Wilkinson (Deakin University, Australia, studying abroad at Hunter), Matthew and Christine had three weeks to select and train two Macaulay students, in addition to preparing for the four 12-15 hour days of shooting and editing that covering an event like Comic Con requires.

Anne Zhou ’14 (Hunter) and Kathleen O’Donnell ’13 (City, both pictured above) were selected as project interns from an impressive pool of applicants. Since they had no prior production experience, Anne and Kathleen trained in four intensive instructional sessions to familiarize themselves with the technical and journalistic basics of creating a news segment. In just two weeks, Anne and Kathleen went from having no knowledge of video production to shooting footage at Comic Con for one of New York’s largest media companies.

The segments produced by the team were two of the most-viewed videos on in the month of October and were promoted on the PBS Arts and Entertainment webpage to art and comic enthusiasts nationwide. This was a substantial achievement for a project that was generated, organized, and produced entirely by students and recent college graduates.

The first segment, a profile of Comic Con through the eyes of comic artists, is available here. The second, a tour of the convention from artist and New York native Josh Adams can be viewed here.

About Friends of THIRTEEN

Friends of THIRTEEN, Inc. is a nonprofit organization governed by a board of directors who provide community liaison for THIRTEEN by strengthening local partnerships, encouraging youth involvement with public media, developing and producing local initiatives, hosting events and expanding grassroots awareness of Thirteen’s education resources and quality programming in the New York metropolitan region.

About WNET New York Public Media

WNET is America’s flagship public media outlet, bringing quality arts, education and public affairs programming to over 5 million viewers each week. The parent company of public television stations THIRTEEN and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV, WNET produces such acclaimed  PBS series as Great Performances, American Masters, Nature, Need to Know, Charlie Rose, Tavis Smiley and a range of documentaries,  children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings available on air and online.  Pioneers in educational programming, WNET has created such groundbreaking series as Get the Math, Noah Comprende and Cyberchase and provides tools for educators that bring compelling content to life in the classroom and at home. WNET highlights the tri-state’s unique culture and diverse communities through SundayArts, Reel 13, NJ Today and the new online newsmagazine MetroFocus.

About Macaulay Honors College

The Class of 2014 was the tenth Macaulay Honors College class, and their admission marked the beginning of the college’s tenth anniversary celebrations. Macaulay recently admitted its largest class to date–the Class of 2015 with over 500 students. Founded in 2001 by Chancellor Matthew Goldstein, Macaulay Honors College has already become one of the nation’s leading honors colleges, offering an exceptional academic and co-curricular environment for future leaders of New York City—and beyond. Macaulay students enroll in one of seven CUNY senior colleges (Baruch, Brooklyn, City, Hunter, Lehman, Queens, or Staten Island). Through the unique Macaulay advising program, each student develops a coordinated, individualized academic program that includes research, global learning, graduate and professional mentoring, community engagement, and close faculty-student collaboration. Selected for their top high school records and leadership potential, Macaulay students are awarded a full-tuition merit scholarship, giving them the freedom to pursue their academic goals without financial burdens. Macaulay further enriches students’ academic experience by providing a laptop and technology support, a $7,500 study grant to pursue global learning and service opportunities, and a Cultural Passport that provides access to more than 200 museums, libraries and other treasures around New York City. For more information about Macaulay Honors College, see