The JMSC’s new multipurpose newsroom and live production facility, built around a professional broadcast studio, is now in full operation.
The facility’s control room has been designed in line with professional media production practices, giving students experience in a real news environment. There are additional facilities for still photo shoots and documentary, radio, podcast and e-learning production.
‘Our new state-of-the-art production studio will take our broadcast training to the next level,’ said JMSC Director Keith Richburg. ‘In addition to giving our students hands-on training, we will also be able to produce professional packages and conduct live interviews with our JMSC staff, or university professors and experts, for broadcast outlets anywhere in the world. This opens up a lot of exciting new possibilities.’
JMSC studio – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA
Lecturer Anne Kruger is a veteran broadcast journalist who has worked for ABC (Australia), CNN, and most recently, Bloomberg TV. She will be using the facility, located in the JMSC’s home in historic Eliot Hall, to teach broadcast journalism classes.
‘From my experience I can see that the JMSC has been fitted out with world-class, professional-standard equipment,’ Kruger said.
‘The students will be able to experience all aspects of live gallery production and presentation, and our new system also incorporates social media channels seamlessly into broadcast production—something that even professional studios are struggling to do in an automated manner,’ she said.
The main studio is a multipurpose area that can be used for current affairs, documentary or e-learning production depending on the sets employed. The news production area is equipped with a green screen backdrop, and there is another area with a mobile backdrop allowing for still photography and chroma key special effects.
The studio can be used by HKU academics and media professionals, and has already been used to record video content for the JMSC’s upcoming massive open online course, or MOOC, titled ‘Making Sense of the News’.
Rooms on the second floor of Eliot Hall have also been refurbished so that video and audio can be shared between all facilities, and cameras in other rooms can be controlled from the main production control room. There are new voiceover recording rooms, and six edit bays. A high-quality colour correction facility has been included for the finishing of documentary material.
Other new additions to the JMSC headquarters include multi-function rooms and a fully equipped interview area. All facilities include streaming devices so productions can be distributed live online.
The main part of the funding for the new studio and facilities came from the Azalea (1972) Endowment Fund which was established by Lawrence Fung, a HKU alumnus who is currently the Chairman and Founder of Hong Kong Economic Times Holdings Limited. A further grant came from the University Development Fund and the University Estates Office.
John Elphinstone of White Light and partner, broadcast systems design and integration company WTS, were selected and hired as the contractors to provide the hardware and software in the new facility after a competitive bidding process.
JMSC studio control room – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA