Sunday, August 24, 2008

My New Classroom

At 8 a.m. tomorrow, a new era dawns for Central Michigan University's department of journalism with the opening of the Caponigro Multimedia Lab. I'll be teaching the first class in there, the opening section of Journalism 202, Introduction to Writing for the Mass Media.
I'll almost expect to hear "Beam me up, Scotty."

It looked as if the opening of the lab might be delayed - construction and fabrication problems slowed things down. But Sunday afternoon, Scott and Rennie, the technical gurus from the College of Communications and Fine Arts, along with their crew, were busily unpacking and setting up Intel Duo Core Macs, and loading them with Adobe CS3, Final Cut Pro, Microsoft Office Suite and other software.

Robert tagged along, and took at look at the wide-screen setup.

Much of the money to pay for this lab was donated by Jeff Caponigro, a journalism alumnus who made very good in public relations. He's now chairman of the CMU board of trustees. The lab features the gear and the software that all of our graduates will need to know how to use as professionals in the multimedia age.

My job: Teach them to use it, while teaching them how to find accurate information, make it relevant for the audience, tell the stories well - and spell all the names correctly.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Andrew heads off to college

Andrew organizes the last of his stuff in the hallway.

Tuesday was a bittersweet day around here. The day we've planned for and aimed for for years came: He left for college.
I'm so proud of him. He's the little boy who cuddled with me on the stairs on Haley Street, who looked so lost and alone that rough year at Sacred Heart, who found himself with the artists and musicians at Mt. Pleasant High, who loved Robert Heinlein, who became a Life Scout and senior patrol leader, earned a varsity letter in skiing, scored near-perfect on the ACT, was recruited by MIT and Michigan, then chose Michigan Tech "because it was right," and was accepted into their honors program.
Yeah, I'm proud of him.

One last e-mail check on his Mac.
I'll worry about him, and I'll probably never stop worrying about him. I worried when he was in second grade. I worried when he skied on Germany's highest mountain. It probably will be Thanksgiving before I see him again, although we'll probably be able to do regular video chats. And I'll miss him. I already miss him.

Miranda may miss him more than anyone else.
Miranda came along on the trip to deliver Andrew to his mom's - she'll actually be making the 10-hour trip up to Houghton. There's something special about those two. They changed each other - both for the better.
Andrew, buddy, as always - make me proud. Or, in this case, prouder. Go Huskies.