April 8, 2016 9:41:11 AM
Columbus High School now has its own talk show.
Currently featuring a cast of five volunteer high school students, the show -- which discusses topics like social media and how to properly eat a Kit Kat -- is led by Andrew Nation, CHS assistant band director who was chosen to be the faculty sponsor of the show.
Falcon Talk will air its first episode on the My Mississippi channel 35 at 11 p.m. Saturday, according to CHS superintendent Philip Hickman. For those with satellite television, the show can be DVR'd for 2 a.m. Saturday morning. While the district plans to eventually air the show weekly, currently it will air every two weeks.
The district paid a fee for the airing of the first episode, and hopes to bring advertisers on to pay for the rest, according to Hickman.
The fee's amount was unavailable as of Dispatch deadline Friday.
Nation will receive a $500 monthly stipend.
The rest of the program has not cost the district, Hickman added.
"Since the district already has high definition television equipment in place, we are able to produce the program at no outside expense to the district," Hickman said, adding the show is an example of students developing skills that they can take with them into future careers. "The students did it all on this program from start to finish. And now they can see their work broadcast on television and the Internet and know they did this great accomplishment."
The students auditioned to be a part of the after-school program, where they film and edit the production twice a week, Nation said. They film at the multimedia lab of the Stokes-Beard Technology & Community Magnet School, which has a similar program in place -- including SPTV animation glass also utilized in Falcon Talk -- as does the elementary school.
"We wanted to put this program in place so those kids in those programs can continue when they leave middle school," he said.
Nation said he has big plans for the show.
"I'd love to be able to see them have a legitimate talk show with a live audience," he said, adding right now the focus is on getting students familiar with the basics of television production, debating and more. "It's amazing to watch the kids have fun with it. They've learned a lot, we had to cover a wide range of topics, like how to debate. We discussed professionalism and how you're perceived."
Aside from the chance to see whether television or journalism is a path the students would like to take, Nation said it gives them academic boost.
"It also give them a chance for scholarships down the line," he said.
The show will also be available on YouTube after the 11 a.m. airing at youtube.com/channel/UC9QvnV1ODPS5zBPSxxNg9yQ.
Sam Luvisi is news editor and covers education for The Dispatch.
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