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Media Services Workers put UAS on Election Day Map

Two student media services student workers got a taste of the challenges of making television news when they took up an opportunity to do a volunteer gig for Dan Rather Reports.

The former CBS new anchor now heads up a digital news service. Juneau resident Saffron Hayes and international student Daniel Todercan were up early election day morning, November 4. The duo joined college students armed with video cameras across the country focused on local voters. Hayes and Todercan’s assignment: to ask voters their thoughts on Alaska’s highest profile in the history of national elections. They interviewed voters with gorgeous sunny, scenic backdrops at the Alaska Marine Highway terminal, in Auke Bay, at the Mendenhall Mall parking lot and downtown.

Jamming to get the interviews, collect the setting footage, edit hours down to minutes and get it to New York City as the polls were closing was much more difficult than they expected. Then Dan Rather Reports ended up not using their contribution. Because the election was called earlier than expected, the program only had time to use footage shot on the East coast. Todercan and Hayes were quite disappointed. But their hard work had a second life.

Todercan’s father heads up a public television station in his home, Chisinau, Moldova. Moldova is small country between Romania and Ukraine. Todercan and Hayes filmed Daniel doing a stand up at the Governor’s mansion, and he edited it with some scenic shots. That piece and a separate narration from Daniel with footage of election day shots from around the U.S. was broadcast in Moldova. Both videos can be seen at his blog:

Hayes’ election day work ended up being nationally broadcast after all. Dan Rather Reports ran the piece “by UAS” on its November 11 program. It can be soon purchased on I-Tunes.

Both Todercan and Hayes say they learned a lot from the experience. “Our video was the prettiest, but maybe not the most journalistically correct,” said Todercan. “It was exhausting and exciting,” reflects Hayes. “I learned that live TV is so unpredictable that even if you plan for something so long, it can change at the last minute. I learned to be accepting of change.”


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