Carissa Drake, a sophomore at Anderson University, recently received the 2012 Indiana Broadcasters Association scholarship. Drake is studying communication arts with a concentration in audio/video/cinema production. During her freshman year, she became engaged in several opportunities on and off campus, allowing her build her craft. These experiences helped to shape her passion for broadcasting, which eventually landed her the IBA scholarship.
In December 2011, Drake saw an ad for the scholarship on WRTV 6, a local news station in Indianapolis. The $2,700 scholarships were for high school seniors and current college students studying telecommunications. “I was reluctant to apply because I thought there would be tons of other students applying,” said Drake. Although hesitant at first, Drake wrote an application essay about her passion for broadcasting. A few months later, she became the first person out of 16 recipients and 147 applicants to receive the scholarship.
Drake graduated from Westfield High School, where she first became interested in broadcasting while taking a high school communications class. During her senior year, Westfield High School built a television studio, allowing her to become more hands-on with equipment and piquing her interest even more. She also began to write and report stories for the high school, which helped sharpen her journalism skills.
“As a writer for our high school TV station, I reported stories about school programs or sports games that ran every week,” said Drake. “I also became the audio director and camera operator while at Westfield.” During her first year at AU, she narrowed her concentration down to audio/video/cinema production, with an interest in editing.
Drake currently works with WQME, AU’s commercial radio station, as a radio personality. Working with WQME, she runs and hosts a three-hour radio segment. Matt Rust, program manager at WQME, also serves as Drake’s audio production professor at AU. Rust urges other students to take advantage of any internship opportunity presented to them.
“We promote the IBA scholarship every year to our students in the major and on-air at WQME. I emailed Carissa to congratulate her for winning one of the scholarships, and she had no idea she was chosen to receive it until I told her,” said Rust. “She has a great work ethic. I've always been very impressed with her work and projects for my classes.”
Drake hopes to soon participate in Covenant Productions®, a film production company that works in conjunction with Anderson University. Covenant Productions® gives students a hands-on opportunity to learn about professional video production and to work on projects outside of the classroom.
In the future, Drake plans to pursue television editing, but she is open to whatever opportunity comes her way. She has already completed an internship with Innovative, a company that specializes in video editing, web design, and marketing. “I was able to help with videos for the Indiana Pacers and on a project for the owner of the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas,” said Drake.
For students looking to gain scholarships, Drake believes that preparation is key. “Take advantage of all opportunities given that will help you perfect your craft,” said Drake. “The more you participate in activities and internships related to your skill, the more impressive your scholarship applications will look.”
— Kelli Webster is a senior from Indianapolis, Ind., majoring in communication arts. Webster is an associate with Fifth Street Communications®, writing on behalf of the Anderson University Office of University Communications.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology.