By Sierra Bein and Ramisha Farooq
A new state-of-the-art broadcasting centre is coming to the Mattamy Athletic Centre (MAC) after a $750,000 donation from Sportsnet.
The centre will be used for the RTA School of Media’s new sports media program, launching in Fall 2014.
The donation will also find scholarships, digital media funding and student driven digital media productions, according to a press release.
“Thanks to Sportsnet, we will have talented students at the hub of our traditional passion for sports, a great new focus on varsity athletics, and outstanding community teamwork advancing Canadian leadership,” Ryerson president Sheldon Levy said.
Jennifer Neziol, director of communications for Sportsnet, has said the that decision to invest in Ryerson seemed very natural.
“We know that Ryerson basically produces some of the most talented producers and production staff in the sports media industry in Canada,” Neziol said.
“I think that Ryeson’s reputation speaks for itself. We have the upmost confidence in the program. One of the most important things is that we are always on cusp on the leading end of technology and innovation.”
Neziol said the broadcast centre will give students practical knowledge so that when they enter the workforce they have the skills they need to succeed.
“I think it’s important for Sportsnet and for Rogers that we really want to give back to community and one of our key focuses is ensuring that youth and adults have access to education and we’re thrilled and excited to be partnered with Ryerson,” Neziol said.
The partnership will also provide students with mentorship opportunities with leaders in the sports media industry and internships for students at Sportsnet in their fourth-year. The school also plans on broadcasting a regular television series featuring university sports from around the country that will be produced by students in the program, in partnership with Sportsnet.
Students may also be able to minor in business at the Ted Rogers School on Management.
“Canada is home to some of the best and brightest minds in the sports broadcasting industry, and we are thrilled to partner with Ryerson to provide cutting-edge educational opportunities for up-and-coming digital broadcast and production talent,” said Scott Moore, the president of Sportsnet & NHL properties.
The four-year sports media BA program is the first of it’s kind in Canada and it will be housed in the MAC. The school has already received 600 applications for 60 spots available in the program.
“We are deeply committed to providing opportunities in education for youth and young adults, particularly when it comes to technology, innovation and the future of sports media in Canada,”Moore said.
According to Charles Falzon, the chair of the RTA School of Media, control rooms will be built on the fourth floor of the MAC for sports media students to use but, most work will be done in courts, rinks and fields shooting and editing footage.
“This funding will help give our students access to professional broadcast equipment and work with some of the leading sport media professionals in the field,” chair of the RTA School of Media Charles Falzon said.