|UST Students Apply Creativity to Produce Bible-Reading PSA|
With the right message, three UST students have found that a 30-second public service announcement can pack a powerful punch. Inspired by Bible’s capacity to unify the faithful, Cimela Kidonakis, Holly Beall and Sarah Pendley applied their personal creativity and the skills they learned in communication classes to produce a PSA to promote UST’s inaugural ecumenical continuous Bible-reading event, “The Word of God: The Bible Unites.” The PSA has been distributed to local affiliates of network television stations.
The students were approached about the project by Sandra Soliz, director of Communications, Sister Maura Behrenfeld, director of Campus Ministry, UST Chaplain Fr. Michael Buentello, CSB, and John Butler, adjunct professor of communication and newscast director for Fox News 26 KRIV. Kidonakis said the three students collaborated to devise a concept, story board, script and production schedule. They filmed diverse individuals including a young boy, a fireman, a soldier, a priest, a nurse and a rabbi to read the first verse of the Bible. Set against the backdrop of the heart of Houston skyline, the readers’ voices transition seamlessly to symbolize a continuous reading of the Bible.
“Our target audience is ecumenical, so we wanted to use the first verse of Genesis because most people are familiar with, ‘In the beginning …’” Kidonakis said. “We also wanted community and civic leaders to whom everyone can relate to read the Bible.”
Compensating for the unpredictable natural lighting from outdoor filming, the students acquired a new skill by using blue screen technology at UST’s communication video editing lab. Though they have all produced previous video projects, this will be the first time their work will be aired on local network affiliates.
“Producing a public service announcement was a great opportunity for our students,” Butler said. “It allowed them to put into practice the concepts and skills they learned in the classroom. In addition, the benefit of being responsible to a client was an invaluable real-world experience that will help prepare them for the job market.”
Pendley, who graduated in December, has a fulltime job and volunteered her time to work on the project. “This is a great way to invite the community to the University and to use our common faith in the Word of God to bridge the gap between different denominations and religions.”
From left to right, the student-directors spell out PSA: Cimela Kidonakis, Holly Beall and Sarah Pendley.
View the PSA on UST's Official YouTube Channel.