Media Services Does Commencement – A Photo Essay

Each year, the Media Services Team gears up to provide audio visual services to cover the many WashU commencement ceremonies that occur across campuses. This year, we shadowed the team to get a sense of the depths of their contribution to making the historic WashU commencement a success.

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Media Technology Manager Tony Phillips looks out over the Field House on the afternoon before commencement. Redundant video capturing and streaming capabilities were set up in the Field House as part of a backup plan in the case of inclement weather.


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Video Engineer Jon Baird (left) and Audio-Visual Production Technician Kevin Hunter work to set up streaming capabilities in a staging area at the Field House.


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Multimedia Specialist Jeff Allen films the Occupational Therapy commencement ceremonies in Graham Memorial Chapel on Friday, May 19. Allen works for Event Services at Danforth University Center and coordinates with the Media Services team to provide a third concurrent live stream for the Occupational Therapy ceremony. 


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Audio-Visual Production Technician Kevin Hunter installs a Livestream encoder in the staging area of the Field House. Similar boxes were set up at all locations where streaming was requested.


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Video Engineer Jon Baird walks past equipment set up by Spot Media Production Group in the staging area of the Field House. WashU IT Media Services Collaborated with Spot to enable live streaming of their feeds from both Brookings Quadrangle and the Field House.


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Brett Koelling (left) and Matt Androff install fiber networking for the equipment used to record and stream the event. Androff and Koelling are on standby during the ceremonies to troubleshoot any technical issues.


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Multimedia Specialist Beth Buchanan consults the master schedule for commencement day. Buchanan says, “We spend weeks coordinating a perfectly synchronized game of Leap Frog in which team members have specific roles. We create a schedule for the day which orchestrates who is where and when. I enjoy the energy on C-Day. Our team is all in it together and I get a real sense of being part of a great team”.


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Media Technology Manager Tony Phillips watches as graduating students enter the quad. Through the doors behind him is one of several areas where his team is coordinating the live streaming of the day’s events. Phillips says, “We are kind of everywhere. the tent is where we are stationed. but we viewing rooms all over”.


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Project Coordinator Tiffany Hardin (left) and Audiovisual Production Support Specialist Braden Henze pose for a photo in front of the FLTC on the School of Medicine campus.


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Commencement attendees wear university branded ponchos distributed at entry points to the Brookings Quadrangle. Strong storms had moved through the area the night before, and light rain lingered as the ceremony’s start time approached.


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Catering staff watches a live stream of the ceremony while preparing a common area of the Brown School of Social Work for a post-graduation reception.


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Skies clear, and commencement attendees shed their ponchos in favor of using their programs to shade their eyes from the sun just moments before the ceremony is scheduled to start. This year’s ceremony follows in a long tradition of narrowly avoiding inclement weather before hosting the ceremony outdoors in beautiful Brookings Quadrangle.