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‘Latest, greatest’ gear coming to high school

Cindy Ramunno

GYPSUM ” Eagle Valley High School students interested in a career in video production will have the opportunity to get a jump-start on their college education next year.

The school received a $70,000 Tech Prep grant to fund a partnership between the Eagle County School District and the Colorado Film School-Community College of Aurora, which will allow the high school to offer a college-level Digital Video Production program for juniors and seniors.

Principal Mark Strakbein said the school will now be able to offer the “latest, greatest” equipment for students.



“It’s amazing what we are going to be able to do with that. We have a large number of students interested in learning about media,” Strakbein said. “Some will go on to pursue a career in that area, and others will just be better off for having the class.”

The grant was written with the help of a local community advisory board, which provided district officials with advice through the planning process.



Board members are Terrence Brown, former general manager of KDVR (Channel 31); Don Cohen, former CEO of Cimarron Productions; Bill Willins, president/owner of Beta Productions; Craig Struve, general manager of Vail Resorts’ TV8; and Jane West of Clarity Jane Productions.

The program will provide for:

– Professional training for the school’s broadcast teacher (Ron Beard) through the Colorado Film School. Beard will attend a one-week course for high school instructors this summer, which was developed to provide the skills necessary to teach high school students the equivalent of the Colorado Film School’s video production courses.



– Improvements to digital video equipment and supplies, including new computers, cameras, audio and lighting equipment and software.

– College level classes and internship experiences for students. Juniors and seniors who take the courses will receive high school and college credit and will be able to enter the Colorado Film School with six college credits in video and film production.

Teacher Ron Beard said he’s excited.

“It will be really great to get the same equipment, software and texts that colleges are using,” Beard said. “Students are going to have a wonderful opportunity to really learn the ins and outs of broadcasting and produce bigger and better projects than our students are doing now.”

Vail, Colorado


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