Learning in Community: Staff Bring Home Ideas from Streaming Media Conference

Photo of staff from Streaming Media West conference

Manuel de los Santos (Media Specialist), Kristin Rabe (Media Services Coordinator), and Todd Coston (Director of Information Services) at the Streaming Media West conference.

Several members of Bakersfield College’s Information Technology team headed to the Streaming Media West conference to learn more about the options for Bakersfield College when it comes to new and emerging media. Manuel de los Santos, Media Specialist, Kristin Rabe, Media Services Coordinator, and Todd Coston, Director of Information Services represented Bakersfield College.

When they returned, Todd sent information about how each member of his team approached their learning at the Streaming Media West conference. Below is what Todd reviewed from the conference.

Manuel’s focus at this conference was very technical. He wanted to understand the equipment others were using, settings on the cameras, audio strategies, etc. Also, he wanted the opportunity to network with people who are doing streaming events on a large scale. Manuel felt that he got what he need from the conference. Many of the discussions he had confirmed the direction he was taking with our hardware solution for doing effective streaming events. Like any technology project, the costs associated with doing effective streaming can vary dramatically depending on how much you want to spend. Manuel is going to create a priority list, with costs, of the various pieces of equipment we can purchase that would improve our ability to stream events. Based on monies we may have left at the end of the year, we will then use some of that money to improve our streaming equipment.

Kristin was more focused on the big picture strategy of streaming events. She participated in sessions like, “Reinventing Education With Video” and “Best Practices for Live Streaming”. These sessions helped her gain a better understanding of where the industry is going and how we might use streaming technology more on our campus. Kristin already has a solid background in video production but this conference really helped her gain some insight into how that translates to the web streaming world. Kristin’s goal is to try and find an effective strategy that will help us utilize streaming without costing us a fortune in both hardware and people resource. Between sessions we had some very candid discussions about how we can make our streaming solution effective but also how we can archive our videos for reference and future use.

My goal was to just understand better how streaming can fit into our video strategy for Bakersfield College. One of the big things that became obvious to me is the lack of basic understanding of the terms used in the video production world. I understand technically how to make video work over the internet but haven’t a clue on the various codecs, equipment, lighting, audio, etc.  This conference gave me a little of that insight and a realization that quality video requires planning and thought for it to have a professional quality.

At the end of the conference, we got together to determine a goal for each of us to work toward. Each of us have a different role but I think the goals we came up with our relevant to our role.

Thanks for giving us the opportunity to attend the conference. It was useful in different ways for each of us.

While conferences and trainings may be considered to take staff away from the important roles they play at Bakersfield College, they provide an essential opportunity to experience new and innovative approaches to student success, from what we teach in the classrooms, to how we provide that education through rich media and technology.

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