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Sounds of the Olympics
NBC Olympics interns Mark Goodell (left) and Chris Heerema sit in front of an audio console in the International Broadcast Center at the Winter Games in Torino, Italy.
The next time you hear an ice skate cut across a rink, or the swoosh of downhill skiers, there’s a good chance Mark Goodell and Chris Heerema are helping to bring those sounds to you.
Goodell, a sophomore majoring in music production and technology at The Hartt School, and Heerema, a senior majoring in audio engineering technology in the College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture (CETA), were chosen to intern with NBC sound crews at the games through a very competitive selection process.
Last February, representatives from NBC Olympics came to campus to recruit student interns. The group included Bob Dixon, manager of sound design for NBC Olympics, who was familiar with the University’s music production and technology program through his friendship with Scott Metcalfe, director of music production and technology at The Hartt School.
Metcalfe said Dixon was specifically looking for two students to handle audio, and Goodell and Heerema fit the bill.
"Mark (Goodell) clearly was someone who was an exception, so I lobbied hard for him because I knew he would be a great help to Bob," said Metcalfe. "He also plays jazz guitar, has a great ear for production, and a good sensibility to sound."
Tim Britt, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at CETA, said that it’s beneficial to NBC Olympics to have an intern like Heerema on staff. He not only knows how to operate audio electronic systems, Britt said, but he can fix them as well. Heerema has also gained much experience working for campus radio stations like WWUH, which has strongly augmented his education.
The students have been in Italy since early January and are working at different locations at the games at least 12 hours a day, seven days a week. Metcalfe said this intern experience could be the beginning of a great relationship with NBC Olympics, which is contracted to broadcast the games through 2012. Meanwhile, the students are meeting many engineers and making lots of contacts. In fact, when he returns, Goodell has an internship lined up with Right Track studio, a major recording studio in New York City.
But while in Torino, the students are doing the University proud. "Your school should be very proud of them," said Dixon. "All of our engineering staff love them both, and a lot of production people have raised their eyebrows when they hear that they are interns. This is exactly what a great internship should be."