Communications majors compete in NAB Show’s ‘War on the Floor’

Rajat Agarwal ’16, Sky Cowans ’16 and Andrew Steinitz ’17 will face off against teams from Clemson University and Fort Hays State University in a student video competition hosted during the 2016 NAB Show, held April 18-21 in Las Vegas.

Sky Cowans ’16 (from left), Andrew Steinitz ’17 and Rajat Agarwal ’16 make up one of three university teams competing in the 2016 NAB Show’s ‘War on the Floor’ student video competition. Photo courtesy of Bryan Baker
The team of Rajat Agarwal ’16, Sky Cowans ’16 and Andrew Steinitz ’17 will represent Elon University in a student video competition, titled “War on the Floor,” taking place at the 2016 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in Las Vegas.

Pitted against teams from Clemson University and Fort Hays State University – located in Hays, Kansas – the three School of Communications students will perform a variety of video and social media tasks April 18-21 during the NAB Show, the world’s largest video, audio and broadcast event serving the digital media and entertainment industries.

The three respective teams are charged with developing and launching a social media component around the convention, creating a 1-2 minute promotional commercial, and producing a long-form (15-20 minute) NAB Show experience compilation video.

The long-form video will focus on the content lifecycle story from the eyes of each student team, and include interviews with speakers and exhibitors and footage from the conference. The finished video project, which is judged by faculty and industry representatives, is not due until May 31.

Although 2,000 miles away, the Elon community can help support its communications majors in the contest through likes, comments and follows on social media. For the social media component, the students will be judged on the creativity of their social media use, in addition to producing high levels of social engagement.

Elon’s NAB team can be found on Facebook, Twitter (@ElonCommNAB), Instagram (@ElonCommNAB) and Snapchat (ElonCommNAB). The team’s first video from Las Vegas is available here.

Elon University community members can help support the three communications majors by following and interacting with their NAB Show-focused social media accounts. 
​Given the magnitude of the conference, with attendees expected to eclipse 100,000, Agarwal explained the contest will be a considerable test, but one his team looks forward to tackling. “Working in an unfamiliar environment is always challenging – especially at a large venue like this,” he said. “However, after we get our bearings down on the first day, I believe we will be able to get rolling quickly.”

Agarwal added that each team member contributes their own unique skill set, and together they form a formidable group.

“Andrew is extremely talented with motion graphic and filming creative time-lapse footage,” he said. “And Sky has a terrific grasp of social media and how to effectively reach different audiences. From my experience working in television news at school, I enjoy working in a high-pressure, fast-paced environment such as this.”

Agarwal, Cowans and Steinitz have the added advantage of having already worked in a conference setting, operating as part of a team handling online news coverage for the 2015 Global Action Summit in Nashville.

Bryan Baker, coordinator of sound and video projects in the School of Communications, doesn’t expect the communications majors to be fazed by the bright lights of Las Vegas.

“This is really an incredible opportunity for our students, to be working among tens of thousands of professionals from the broadcasting and technology fields,” said Baker, the team’s faculty adviser. “While some students might be rattled by that, I think Rajat, Sky and Andrew will rise to the occasion because that’s the sort of people they are – and will be in their professional careers.”

As part of the competition, the NAB Show provided the team members with lodging and a travel stipend. In addition to promotion on the NAB Show’s social media channels, the winning team members will receive complimentary SMART PASS registration to the 2017 NAB Show.