Tag Archives: J410

Taking the Polar Plunge

Courtesy of Special Olympic Website

Courtesy of Special Olympic Website


Thanks to the dedication and generosity of over 7,300 participants, The Polar Plunge 2014 fundraiser was a huge success. With 20 events being held at lakes across Illinois, participants were about to raise over 2 million dollars for the Illinois Special Olympics.

What is the Polar Plunge? People ask family and friends to sponsor them and in return they must take the “plunge” and dive into a lake with it’s freezing winter temperatures. Many people who take the plunge come back annually, since it benefits such a great cause. It is fun too: many people dress up in costumes which proves to be very entertaining.

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My Multimedia Journey…







Wow… what a journey it has been since the start of our multimedia class this semester. I remember feeling so overwhelmed the first day of class. I had no idea what to expect, and I remember looking at the previous class’s page and thinking that there was no way that I was going to get through all eight assignments. I left the class with a bag full of equipment, a list of additional equipment to buy and Assignment One hanging over my head. Looking back, I am proud how much I’ve improved and learned in one short semester. Little by little my videos progressed and I gained more confidence in my shooting and editing abilities. With that being said, here is a look back at all eight of my multimedia assignments:

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Adventures in Multimedia: The End of a Journey

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This Canon became my best friend for the semester! | Photo taken with Instagram

The Best (Class) I Ever Had
Life is a process of trials and tribulations, and with each challenge presented, you grow from the lessons learned.

Likewise, my time in multimedia has been incredibly worthwhile. Not only did I learn the basics of shooting, editing and writing for multimedia, but I also was able to go through this journey with encouraging and talented classmates.

Before I get all sentimental, let’s rewind to the beginning.
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Beyond words: Becoming a multimedia journalist

IMG_0066Before taking Multimedia Reporting, I always considered myself a print journalist, a writer. Words were my specialty. I ordered them in a way that makes people want to read them. In addition to my words, I often compiled graphics  to help explain complex issues. Sometimes, I’d take some photos or shoot a video if I thought it was  necessary to comprehend a story I had written. I tried not to add multimedia, though, because it was a lot of work. Plus, did it really add that much?

Yes, yes it did.

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Student Employment: Perks of Working in University Dining Services

Around 1,200 students – from freshmen to graduate – find employment in the University’s six dining halls and catering service. Many students end up working for a few years (if not all four or five years of their college career) and even find themselves moving up to Student Supervisors.

A student worker is busy carving meat.
Photo courtesy of University Housing webpage.

Most people don’t know why some students enjoy working in the University’s dining services, so I decided to do an audio story about the benefits of working in the dining hall. The increase in pay, free meals and new friendships were the reasons mentioned by a couple of students.

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All Hands on Deck, Keeping that Academic Stress in Check


My roommate, Angel, stresses out at the amount of homework that needs to be done.

Stress levels rise as students deal with constant pressure from piles of homework, extracurricular activities to go to, work that needs to be done and everything else school-related. As college students, there is plenty on our minds. But one thing we shouldn’t have to worry about is the negative effects stress can have on our health and well-being.

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How To Dye Your Hair

Photo on 1-19-14 at 1.49 PMFor Assignment 6, we made “How to” videos and I did “How To Dye Your Hair”. I decided to be spontaneous before coming back to school after winter break and added a splash of purple to naturally brunette hair. Since it had been well over a month and the color was faded, I figured this would be a great topic for a “How to” video!

I know the first time I dyed my hair I had no idea what I was doing, and I’m sure other people feel the same way. According to The Marie Claire fashion and beauty section, “Hair color is an identity—when you change it, you can become a different person”. The Statistic Brain says that 75% of women dye their hair in some way, so this is obviously a relevant topic.

I am very pleased with the outcome of this video (and the results of touching up my purple hair.) To date, this is the project that I spent most time on, both filming and editing, and I think it shows. Dyeing hair on a normal day takes a good chunk of time, however when you are filming all the different steps it takes twice as long. I filmed two different days for this video, because I started shooting before getting my story board approved by Professor Collins and filmed some additional footage after getting her feedback. Even though it took extra time, I think that it improved the overall video and I’m glad I did it.

Original Story Board

Original Story Board

Not only did filming take a long time, but editing did as well.  Again, it is all worth it because I am proud of this video. I used to shoot and edit videos in high school, and it was always something I enjoyed. I am finally in the swing of producing videos again and it feels great! Could I have done things differently or made it better? Sure, there’s always room for improvements. One thing I was experimenting with was adding narration over the B-roll, but I decided against it. Although it would have enhanced the video I am still happy with the outcome.

I hope you like my Assignment 6 video as much as I do! Take a look and leave a comment below.

Adventures in Multimedia: Planning it Out

They say it’s always good to think before you speak – I think you could take that a step further for multimedia and say it’s a good idea to plan before you do. Assignment six involves creating a “How To” piece, and before shooting, we had to create storyboards to plan out what our videos will look like. I did mine on “How to be Happy.”

Here’s a look at mine (please excuse my stick figures):

storyboard kassam

Click on the image to expand!

storyboard kassam 2

Click on the image to expand!

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Adventures in Multimedia: I Love Illinois Week

Oh boy, where do I begin with assignment five? This assignment probably took the most energy out of me in terms of filming, interviewing and editing. But, I think it was all a great preparation for what’s to come for assignment eight.

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Staff members of 1867 Society get ready to hand out “I Love Illinois” tanks at Ikenberry Commons.

This week, the campus organization 1867 Society is hosting I Love Illinois Week to build school pride across the university. On Tuesday Feb. 25, at Ikenberry Commons, 1867 Society gave out 500 “I Love Illinois” tanks to students who donated a shirt from a different school. The day was dubbed “Give to Receive Day.”

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An Exciting Suspense


University of Illinois Students anxiously wait after Ellen DeGeneres told students to be on the quad for a surprise.  If I haven’t learned anything else in this class so far, I’ve learned the importance of having a Plan B. 


For Assignment 5, I set out to cover  “One Winter Night” a benefit for Homeless people in the Champaign Urbana area. 

 After shooting a few things, I realized the quality of the video was not good…It was at night time and I found myself having trouble with making it work.
When I learned about the Ellen DeGeneres Surprise, I immediately thought I could go to the event for Multimedia.