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From crime scenes to phone screens, Digital Media students have been projecting their talents

Published:18 November 2019

1. Mackay Hospital Foundation GM T’aire Olsen with students L-R Zachary Lalor, Steven Jesser, Hudson Burn and Tylah Kinbacher. 2. Images from the Volunteering At The Hospital video. 3. Images from a series of videos promoting and documenting the inaugural BHP Whitsunday STEM Challenge for human powered vehicles in Mackay. 4. Images from a speculative television crime genre series pilot. 5. Images from a set of lifesaver training resource videos.

From videos promoting volunteering at the hospital and web-based training resources for lifesavers to a speculative pilot for a TV crime series, CQUniversity's Digital Media students have been projecting their talents into the community.

Most of the Collaborative Digital Media Project students volunteer as consultants for external stakeholders and many teamed up to produce digital video, either for social media, kiosks or websites.

Digital Media Senior Lecturer Dr Ashley Holmes says the Mackay Hospital Foundation was grateful to receive a broadcast quality video to promote volunteering at the hospital.

He said the most demanding project of 2019 was for a series of videos promoting and documenting the inaugural BHP Whitsunday STEM Challenge for human-powered vehicles in Mackay.

"The STEM Challenge took place early in the year when most of our teams are still in the project definition and planning stage, so the whole schedule had to be brought forward," Dr Holmes says.

"The team of five students created animation and an original jingle to be used on all 12 unique videos: three promoting the event; one customised document for each of the five participating schools; and a branded video presentation for each of the four major sponsors. In addition, the team provided a photo library consisting of a hundred images."

Dr Holmes says another Mackay-based team opted to create a speculative TV crime genre series pilot, which involved actors from the Bachelor of Theatre course and elsewhere.

"The ambitious project to produce a 20-minute pilot provided a challenging learning curve," he says.

A Rockhampton-based team of students, supervised by lecturer Brendan Murphy, was able to produce a set of lifesaver training resource videos for Aqualification.

Aqualification now maintains an annual brief with CQUni Digital Media to produce resources that they would not otherwise have the funds to commission commercially.

"Our company has been able to create lifeguard training videos that enable our lifeguards to get the professional development they require in a time-saving, efficient manner, which allows our company to keep the community safer," says client Joy Symons.

Other clients which received video production assistance included the Noosa Alive! Cultural Festival, Gladstone’s Creative Recycling Centre, and the Sunshine Butterflies disability support charity.

In 2018, the Collaborative Digital Media Project teaching team won the coveted CQUni Opal award for Engaged Training and Education. This year, Dr Holmes has received a Vice-Chancellor's Award for Outstanding Contributions to Learning and Teaching (Tier 2) “for leading service-learning experiences where collaborating undergraduates apply their talents to solve digital communication challenges, enhancing CQUniversity’s engagement, and each student’s industry preparedness: win-win-win".

Dr Holmes currently seeks registrations of interest for projects for the 2020 program. Please email a.holmes@cqu.edu.au for further information.