How Liberty runs some of it’s biggest events

Starting with lights, camera, action, a lot goes on behind the scenes in order to produce regularly attended events at Liberty, like Convocation and Campus Community. Dozens of staff members and students work together to monitor audio, video and visual effects through Campus Productions. 

Campus Production is a service department at Liberty, according to Sheldon Donigan, the event production manager. It encompasses the Event Production team, which is responsible for all things stage management, lighting and audio. From lighting and audio technicians, stage managers and house monitors, all kinds of skilled workers do their best to create a captivating experience for the audience. For example, the lighting director (LD) coordinates all the lighting during worship and when the guests speak. The position MON (which stands for ‘monitors’) mixes audio specifically for the singers and the band. Event Production is also responsible for events beyond Convocation and Campus Community. For example, it coordinates the Open Mic Nights hosted by Student Activities. 

The Broadcast Productions side of Campus Production consists of a team of 18 staff members and student workers. Eight team members operate cameras in the Vines Center, along with a tech manager in charge of all the cameras. The other half of the broadcast team operates off-site from a control room in Green Hall.  

The Office of Spiritual Development designs and uploads the graphics to display on the screen during Convocation and Campus Community. Content operators in the control room present the lyrics and graphics on the screen.  

According to Donigan, it takes roughly 20 people to produce both Convocation and Campus Community. Currently, there are 24 student workers and 20 full-time workers. Donigan said that students can become involved in Campus Production through their shadowing program. Interested students can shadow to see how Campus Production operates and what being a student worker is like. In regards to training, Donigan recommends that students have a basic background in technology either from high school or church.

“We do our best to give training materials and provide hands-on training to each individual,” Donigan said. 

John Myers was a Campus Production student worker while studying at Liberty and was hired full-time to be a broadcast production tech following his graduation. 

“I found my experience to be an incredible opportunity to learn things that classes were unable to teach,” Myers said.

Myers learned a lot during his time working with Campus Production.

“Attention to detail and initiative are some of the most important things I learned since I began working here,” Myers said. 

He continues to expand his technical skills in broadcast communications. 

“It has been really special to me to be able to work in the same place that meant so much to me while a student,” Myers said. “I find it such a privilege to come to work every day to do something I love. That’s the dream come true.”

Emma Sink, a freshman studying digital media and journalism, recently began working for Campus Production as a student worker. 

“Unlike other jobs I’ve had in the past, I enjoy getting up in the morning for work, knowing that I get to be a part of something great,” Sink said.

Sink enjoys working in an environment that allows her to be a part of different events on campus. 

“I’ve worked a lot of events that I wouldn’t have attended otherwise, and I had no idea what I was missing. I’ve witnessed some absolutely beautiful worship moments from behind the scenes, which makes my job 100 times better,” Sink said. 

She encourages students to consider joining Campus Production as well.

“If I could offer any advice to students interested in joining Campus Productions, I’d start with don’t let fear or a lack of experience keep you from trying,” Sink said.

Lunt is the digital media producer for the Liberty Champion. Follow her on Twitter

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