By Phillip J. Milano
This year’s nominee list in the Associated Press Broadcasters College Contest includes a bumper crop from Jacksonville University, with four student pieces named finalists -- the most yet for the school.
First-place winners in the contest, which is overseen by the Florida Associated Press Broadcasters Board, will be announced Saturday, April 21, in Orlando.
“While I'm always a bit anxious waiting for the nominations, it was very clear to me that these students and their projects were special from the start,” said Dr. Annmarie Kent-Willette, associate professor of communications at JU.
She added that the breadth and depth of superior projects made this year special.
“The commitment to excellence was contagious and empowering. It has been a delight to be a part of their success."
Here are JU's finalists in the College TV category:
Alicia Esteban -- Best Sports, Dolphin Channel, "Stay, Fight, Win Together”
This piece showcases JU's football team from its start to the present, including archival and current footage and interviews with players and coaches about the team's birth, challenges and growth. View at youtu.be/xaBuMkMRhC8.
"It's been a great experience to learn what a football program is truly about,” said Esteban, executive producer for The Dolphin Channel. “Thanks to my professors, the football program and the Channel 4 sports department, it turned out better than I would have imagined."
Ethan Wellhausen -- Photo Essay, Dolphin Channel, "I Believe In Living Life to the Fullest"
Wellhausen discusses his belief in living life to the maximum after losing his mother at age 15 to a drunk driver. She encouraged him in all his pursuits, he says, and he has now decided to travel the world as a missionary showing God's love. View at youtu.be/RpWXqC2pM7U.
“I was not expecting for it to have gone as far as it has. It is both an honor and makes me humble as I shared a belief of mine,” said Wellhausen, a producer for The Dolphin Channel. “I'm excited to see where it goes next.”
Alyssa Fernald -- Long Light Feature, Dolphin Channel, "Patients. Providers. Philanthropy"
This short-format documentary profiles We Care, a non-profit that provides health care to the underserved, uninsured and homeless of the Jacksonville community. View at youtu.be/3pgf1DoH1h8.
"I will always remember when I interviewed Elizabeth, a breast cancer survivor, she told me that We Care saved her life,” said Fernald, station manager for The Dolphin Channel. “In that moment I appreciated my life so much more. Things like that drive my passion for producing documentaries.”
Alicia Esteban/Alyssa Fernald -- Short Hard News Feature, Dolphin Channel, "ROTC: Right or Wrong Place on Campus?”
This piece examines JU's Reserve Office Training Corps and questions whether the program should be on campus. View at youtu.be/eReFbNIKqYo.
"It's unbelievable to see what Alyssa and I could produce in such a short amount of time,” said Esteban. “Waking up at the crack of dawn to film footage for ROTC wasn't one of my top five things to do, but looking back it was definitely worth it."