FAIRVIEW, Tenn. (WKRN) – Broadcasting students at Fairview High School kicked off the new school year with their new-to-them television and film studio.
News 2 donated its retired StormTracker set to the Yellow Jackets.
At the time of the donation, teacher Bob King was on medical leave and students were anxious to get it all set up. Rather than wait for his return, students used pictures of StormTracker in its heyday to assemble part of the set themselves.
“We just wanted it up as soon as possible and we didn’t want to wait,” said a student named Tanner.
Students Luke Rains and Kelsey Sullivan added, “There were just pieces everywhere. They were huge and so complex. We were terrified honestly to put it together ourselves.”
“It was really a guessing game. Sometimes we had to go back and realize we did something wrong, some things were upside down, we had to flip them over,” recalled Jack.
When News 2 recently visited the newly assembled set, Senior Michael Hutchinson was directing rehearsals for the first episode of a weekly TV show.
“I like working with all of my classmates,” he said. “We collaborate and get things done.”
He continued, “I was really excited to get [the set]. I knew that we could use it this year in our school show and I knew we could really take advantage of that.”
Now with the set in place, graphic logos and studio lights are the next big assignments for the students.
“I can’t wait to put up the lighting grid,” teacher Bob King said. “You folks were nice enough to give us some great studio lights. We can’t wait to put those up.”
King said the StormTracker set and studio lights transform his program from a TV classroom into a proper studio with endless creative possibilities.
“This is such a big boost to what we do. You picture kids that used to be in an English classroom at one point working on a table and we’re telling them to act like you’re a real news anchor, but for them to sit at a real set in what feels like a real studio, it transforms things,” King explained.
Students Luke Rains and Kelsey Sullivan added, “Now I feel formal and like I can actually be a TV anchor here and feel good about it. I’m already thinking about what coffee mug to bring on set,” Rains and Sullivan said.
So far, only about two thirds of the retired News 2 studio is set up at the high school.
The students are discussing the possibilities of what they can do on the set, including, a cooking show, a variety show and even a soap opera.