PETALING JAYA, 23rd July 2009 – KDU College Diploma in Mass Communication students, Brandon Liu Jia Tar, Lim Charlson, Boo Sha Lyn, Lu Heng Shun and Amanda Khoo, had a lot to be happy about recently as the fruit of their labour were shown in reel life.
The students had directed and produced the college’s first ever cinema advertisement shown across Golden Screen Cinemas in One Utama (PJ), Midvalley Megamall (KL), Pavillion (KL) and One Borneo in Kota Kinabalu.
More often than not, students in colleges and universities are tasked with case studies or projects based on real circumstances, and asked to present it to a panel of judges, be it their lecturers or other corporate figures, for marks.
With its belief that challenges facilitate learning experience, the college decided to take it one step further and asked its Diploma in Mass Communication Match 2008 intake students to pitch for the job of producing the college’s cinema advertisement.
In a Film Studies workshop conducted by Mass Communication lecturers, Ms. Maha Abubakr and Mr. Gary La Faber, the students were given a brief on the project and had to brainstorm for ideas, which was then presented to the Head of Mass Communication, Ms. Sharon Ng and the college’s Advertising & Promotions Executive, Ms. Jocelyn Loke.
Ideas from 12 groups were presented and from there, three were shortlisted. The final three then had to come up with a storyboard to present to the management.
“Besides coming up with the storyboard, we also had to think hard and long at the logistics and resources. Finally, our ad ‘KDU Chase’ was then pitched to the management team and then we heard it – “Your idea is selected!” !” It was then that it hit us – our idea could actually promote KDU College, and producing our own commercial would be an unforgettable experience!” Amanda Khoo, one of the members from the winning team, recalled.
However, pitching for the job was just the very beginning. The team had a long way to go. The pre-production process was not as smooth sailing as the team had imagined it to be, as they did not have the experience to produce such a large project and were very nervous about it.
There were so many considerations to be thought over including the weather as Mother Nature is something beyond control. After a few changes on the storyboard, sourcing of location, cast and props, revisions of the budget, many phone calls, e-mails, and sleepless nights, it was finally the first day of filming.
The atmosphere on set was pure excitement. For the team, it was an eye opener to learn about the details that go into getting government approval, setting up the props, the positioning of the lightings and even the cast.
The team took two days to film the entire advertisement. If things were a little chaotic during the first day as the team was inexperienced, by the second day, they were deft hands. At the end of the second day, the team breathed with great relief as they shouted, “It’s a wrap!”
Amanda said, “We would be lying if we said that we did not have fun. We laughed ourselves silly in between takes. It was great to sit in the “Director’s seat” and ordered people around, to be able to handle professional lightings and cameras, and to be able to go around saying, “I was part of this production.” We would be lying if we said we did not learn anything from producing this commercial. What we learn in class cannot top the actually experience of being part of a real-life production team.”
She continued, saying, “In 30 seconds, you could have typed out an e-mail to your friend. In 30 seconds, your grandmother could walk up a flight of stairs. In 30 seconds, all bragging aside, you would have watched a commercial that we were very proud to produce.”
KDU College has 2 campuses, Petaling Jaya and Penang, and each is made up of three main school of studies; School of Arts & Social Sciences, School of Hospitality, Tourism & Culinary Arts, and School of Engineering, Science & Technology. These three schools offer diploma and pre-university programmes which are specifically tailored for different degree courses. The college also offers a wide range of degree programmes with top international universities from UK, Australia and Switzerland. The college’s intake is currently in progress.