By Megan Acquavella
Sacred Heart University students in the Broadcast Journalism program have been coping with the changes in student life while learning how to remotely produce their television show, “The Pulse.”
“The Pulse,” Sacred Heart’s TV News Magazine, is staffed by students enrolled in the courses TV News Magazine Production I and II. It is a combination of a class and a club, and the content is entirely written, filmed, edited and produced by the undergraduate students. Prof. Alicastro, Director of Broadcast Journalism and Media Production at the School of Communication and Media Arts (SCMA), oversees the program.
Written on Sacred Heart’s website, “Alicastro is a veteran Producer of NBC News and in addition to teaching at Sacred Heart, he has recently acted as Senior Producer for NBC News’ Education Nation.”
“Producing the program remotely means we have to patch together all of the different parts that make up our show. All of that takes much more time working online but the students have made it all work through their diligence,” said Alicastro.
According to website of “The Pulse,” “Segments aired on ‘The Pulse’ vary from events on campus and the surrounding area, to around the world, covering a multitude of subjects.”
Episode #34 of “The Pulse” was released on March 31, and covered stories related to the coronavirus pandemic.
“When faced with the shutdown of Martire and our studio, the students were eager to keep producing ‘The Pulse’ and use several technologies to produce the program remotely,” Alicastro said.
The first segment of the latest episode featured student journalist, Allison Plezia, stressing the essential precautions to take in preventing the spread of coronavirus.
Bret Weiner, a pharmaceutical salesman, said, “Staying away from crowds, washing your hands and not touching your face are three things you can do to give yourself a 50 to 75 percent chance of not getting this virus.”
“The Pulse” is accompanied by its sister show, “Pulse Plus,” which is produced by Sacred Heart’s Broadcast Journalism graduate students. The program also creates a space for graduate students to produce professional TV news segments.
Graduate student Priscila Serrano said, “I saw this was a mostly hands-on program and that’s exactly what I was looking for, since I wanted to be close to New York City for some internship opportunities.”
Both undergraduate and graduate students had to use different technology in order to remotely produce the shows since Sacred Heart’s Fairfield campus closed in March.
Senior Quinn Garvey broadcasted a unique segment for episode #34 in which she showcased her spring break trip with her family to France. “The making of this show was definitely different than our usual studio shows, but all of us doing our part made for a great show under these unusual circumstances,” said Garvey.