Opinion: A New Opportunity: Establishing a Relationship Between CMF and Lancer Athletics
by: Justin Peters
There is a dearth of on-campus media coverage for Lancer varsity teams, and it needs to be addressed. The University of Windsor campus community deserves quality coverage of varsity sport.
If it weren’t for the news pieces written by students in Dr. Craig Greenham’s Newsroom course that supplies content to the Lance, students wouldn’t be plugged into our sports scene.
This year is a bit of an exception, given that our Lancers are not actively competing. Moving forward, however, students should make the most of our opportunities to provide and consume coverage.
As vaccines become more widely available to members of the general population and social gathering restrictions are lifted, it is going to be more important than ever to increase student-generated Lancer’s coverage. We must prioritize telling the stories of our student-athletes.
When the Ontario government enables varsity teams to return to play, it will be prudent to enhance broadcasting capacities to increase engagement with the campus community. We don’t know how many people will be allowed to attend varsity events next year. Students need to do their part to make these broadcasts the best they can be.
I think I can speak for my fellow students when I say we will be eager to closely follow Lancer varsity teams when they’re back in action.
At my alma mater, Brock, accessibility to varsity athletic events was never an issue. I could access coverage of the Badgers athletic contests through the university’s broadcast network known as Brock TV. Available through an independent website and promoted on social media channels, Brock TV was founded in 2005 by Film and Communication students. The network is dedicated to providing student-produced campus coverage, live sports, and original content.
If Brock can do it, I think we can too, here’s how it could work:
In the basement of Erie Hall on Windsor’s campus, there are a plethora of videography resources – we’re talking, lights, high-definition cameras, microphones, you name it, we have it.
Communication, Media and Film (CMF) students here at Windsor are encouraged to use these resources to complete assignments and projects. So, we should follow Brock’s lead and integrate CMF student coursework within the varsity athletic landscape.
Similar to the Newsroom course offered in the Department of Kinesiology mentioned above, this concept has the ability to integrate experiential learning opportunities related to creative production skills applicable to a “real world” setting.
From a business perspective, creating an independent platform to showcase Lancer athletics has the ability to attract sponsors, thus diversifying the university’s current portfolio of sponsoring parties.
Like any revolutionary idea, there are always key considerations. Obviously, it will require departmental (perhaps faculty) blessing. Our varsity teams also need to be onside with increased coverage of athletes. However, the argument made earlier serves as a testament as to why this idea works to benefit all of the involved parties.
Student-athletes and varsity programs could receive increased exposure and interest from the university community. CMF students can gain practical experiences shooting and producing content to be disseminated to the campus constituents.
Lancer athletes deserve more opportunities to be seen and CMF students deserve more opportunities to learn through practical experiences in a variety of settings.
So, let’s make it happen, UWindsor!