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Throwback Tuesday: Getting Schooled

How Ward-Beck equipment is helping to educate the broadcast professionals of tomorrow

Welcome back to Throwback Tuesday! This time, let’s take a brief look at Ward-Beck Systems’ historic partnerships with educational institutions. It’s no secret that technology is evolving at a rate that threatens to leave Moore’s law far behind in the dust. At such a time of change, it is crucial that those hoping to break into the audio and broadcasting industry get practical experience with industry-standard equipment.

As early as 1981, the Conestoga College of Applied Arts and Technology installed a WBS L2402 console in its Radio & Television Department, where helped many students to develop hand-on experience and gain practical knowledge they can put to good use in the world of professional broadcasting.

Students pursuing a Master of Fine Arts or Science in Television Production at Brooklyn College are encouraged to make use of the Brooklyn College Television Center, which includes a Ward-Beck console in its armada.

By using these consoles as part of the curriculum, students can bridge the distance between academic experience and the workplace. Westphal College of Media Arts & Design has Ward-Beck equipment in its recording studio classroom, which is used by students and even recording professionals, truly bridging the divide between education and the industry.  And hey, some of you might remember us talking about the 48x48 Ward-Beck matrix intercom used by ABC to broadcast the Olympics. Well, Algonquin College’s instructional lab has one of these installed in its instructional lab. It might be old but it’s still going pretty darn strong.

The use of our equipment in institutions of learning is not limited to radio alone. Having installed it in 2008, the University of King’s College School in Halifax makes use of a Ward-Beck console for its Journalism Department.

The College of Sports Media, which offers an exclusive sports broadcasting course, has a state of the art radio studio which includes a 12-port WBS console.  Stephen Leacock Collegiate Institute has 24-track Ward-Beck console and attached voice-over booth in the audio control room of its Leacock Television Network Studio. There are further Ward-Beck equipment functioning in the studios of various learning institutions such as Mohawk college (see pictures here), Niagara College, Seneca College, Centennial College and Southern Alberta Institute of Technology.  Technology may have moved on, but these old products are working as well as they did in their prime, educating broadcasting students worldwide.

Practical experience does far more than help students become accustomed to studio production technologies. The use of industry-standard equipment in college studios also helps students to mature as media professionals, and learn the intangible skills required by a broadcasting career, such as professionalism and adaptability, in settings that replicate real life situations. In the end, no textbooks can teach that. Only practical experience can develop such skills, and Ward-Beck Systems is proud to be one of the companies whose equipment has a hand in shaping the media professionals of tomorrow.

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