Member company Calrec Audio, a broadcast specialist that has developed a range of digital consoles, has had its Summa audio console installed at Husson University's New England School of Communications (NESCom) in Bangor, Maine.
This will give its video production and audio engineering students hands-on experience on an industry-standard desk. The Summa gives students a competitive edge when they graduate — a benefit more universities are starting to recognise.
"A huge advantage of our program is that students train on the same equipment they will be using to earn a living," said NESCom Executive Director Rodney Verrill. "We knew a few years ago that we wanted a Calrec console, not only because that's what graduates will see in the workplace, but also because of Calrec's reputation for ease of use, flexibility, and customer service.
"Thanks to a partnership with Calrec, we were able to purchase this desk for our students. For them to get their hands on this type of technology is amazing. One of our graduates, who is now a freelance A1, said, 'Finally, the right console at the right institution!' It's a testament to the progress we are making by adding the Summa."
NESCom's video production and audio engineering students use the Summa in a studio environment to produce live newscasts and recorded public affairs shows. The layout and operation of the board is easy for beginners to learn and use, yet the underlying features are advanced enough to satisfy any expert user, such as the industry professionals who serve as instructors.
"The Summa is a Ferrari disguised as a Chevy," Verrill said. "To the beginner it looks very simple, but the flexibility and availability of patching and DSP are among the best in the industry."
NESCom offers bachelor's degrees in communications technology, entertainment production, and mass communications, and having the Summa boosts NESCom's graduate placement outreach program.
"Now that we have the Summa, we have a new reason to reach out to employers and remind them that we are current with industry standards, which means our grads will be able to hit the ground running when they're hired. It gives our program and our graduates an edge," Verrill added.
Working with the video production and journalism departments, NESCom expects to expand use of the Summa console to connect with its remote production truck, where the remote truck will send signals to the Summa via MADI over fibre.
"More and more educational establishments are recognising the benefits of training students on equipment they're likely to encounter when they enter the world of professional audio broadcasting. NESCom is ensuring new video production and audio engineers graduate with directly relevant experience, which benefits the whole industry," said Dave Lewty, Calrec U.S. regional sales manager. "We applaud NESCom for investing in its students in this way, and we're pleased to be a partner in the effort."