Ernest & Anna Ritter Family Endowment Provides Gift to Complete Funding of Mobile Media Production Unit
JONESBORO — A $30,000 gift from the Ernest and Anna Ritter Family Endowment and E. Ritter & Company is supporting the creation of a mobile media production unit (MMPU) for Arkansas State University’s Media and Communication students.
“As a locally owned company, we have a long history of supporting local communities, advanced technology and higher education,” said Ritter Arnold, Executive Vice President for External Affairs for E. Ritter & Company. “We’re honored to have the opportunity to help Arkansas State students gain access to the most up-to-date digital video equipment on the market today.”
The gift assists in the completion of a mobile media production unit that can shoot, produce and broadcast sporting and other significant events around Northeast Arkansas. The mobile unit contains state-of-the-industry cameras, production and editing equipment that are used to stream digital video content to ESPN3 and other media outlets.
“We are so appreciative of this grant from the Ernest and Anna Ritter Family Endowment,” said Dr. Brad Rawlins, special assistant to the provost and former dean of the College of Media and Communication. “This gift, along with additional gifts from the Sun Belt Conference and the A-State Department of Athletics, were critical to completing this unit.”
The unit provides Arkansas State students experience in producing professional-level media content, particularly in the area of sports media, and expand and improve opportunities for students to have careers in digital media production.
Rawlins also stated while there is still a need for some additional equipment for mobile production, the unit is operational and students, faculty and staff began streaming men’s and women’s Red Wolves basketball games on ESPN3 in January. Plans are in place to produce many more A-State and regional high school sports throughout the year.
Collin Pillow, instructor in creative media production and studio coordinator at A-State, is the leader for the MMPU project. Pillow, who has extensive professional experience as an announcer, director, videographer and cable-television coordinator, is the producer for ASU-TV video coverage of A-State football and basketball games, and for the Red Wolves’ video scoreboards. He and his students have produced digital streaming broadcasts of baseball, volleyball and soccer games.