It was a win – win for the Morris Area Advanced Digital Media Class and the Regional Fitness Center of Morris. Both benefited tremendously from a class project recently completed by the students in the class under instructor Jenny Maras.
Early in the year, the Regional Fitness Center in Morris started talking about doing a video about the RFC. Brittany Reed, RFC Aquatics Coordinator, just moved to Morris a few years ago and learned about the RFC. She was amazed at what the fitness center had to offer and found that many people who live here do not know what is available to them.
Reed had a conversation with Morris Area High School Principal Bill Kehoe about what they were looking for. He immediately referred her to Jenny Maras and her Advanced Digital Media Class. Maras and her students were excited to take on the challenge.
Maras decided to make it even more of a challenge. Her class of 18 sophomores, juniors and seniors were split into five groups. She made it a competition with each group creating their own video depicting various scenes at the RFC. The class was able to go to the RFC and take photos and videos. They then returned to the classroom and used WeVideo to create the video.
Before taking the students to the RFC, the groups met and discussed a plan for the video. They needed to decide on what they wanted to feature and the images they would need. There was also music to select from WeVideo for the background of the video.
After these brainstorming sessions, the students were given day passes to take the photos and videos. This included access to the pool, weight room, pickle ball court, and other aspects of fitness. They were able to get ‘behind the scenes’ shots of what is done at the RFC. One of the groups even used a drone to get footage for their video.
The students were given rare access to the underwater viewing area of the competition pool. They sat in the observation area while swimming and diving classes were being given. They were able to take pictures from both above and at ground level of some of the fitness classes. Some groups included the daycare programs, body pump workouts and yoga classes. The challenge was to capture as much as possible in a 90 second video.
Once the five videos were completed, students presented their work to the RFC for judging. A panel of 12 people of varying ages helped judge the video. Each of these judges selected the same video as being in first place even though all the videos were very good.
The video created by Ava Wayne, Haley Wulf, and Kayla Wiese was selected as the winner. These girls, as well as the other four groups, received several prizes including day passes, candy and Caribou gift cards.
“This really gave us the ‘feeling’ of what the RFC stands for – community, and a family-friendly facility that has something for all ages, 0 to 100. They hit all of the different areas of the facility including the walking track, the fitness room, the pools, the gym, personal training, group fitness and more,” said the judges.
The video begins at what would be the start of a visit, the front door. It then takes you past the snack counter and onto the walking track. It takes you into the weight room and then down to the pool. There is a video of someone diving into the water and then the video goes to the underwater view of a dive. It even includes a video of a work-out session with the RFCs oldest member who is 99 years old.
“We enjoyed making the video,” stated Wayne. “Ms. Maras has a great teaching style that gets students involved in the community. It was a fun experience and awesome collaboration.”
Maras and the RFC staff members were excited to partner together for a fun, hands-on project. The RFC management team agreed that all of the videos were outstanding. “These students are learning awesome hands-on skills and we were blown away by their knowledge and talent.”
RFC manager Monique Richardson stated, “What these talented students accomplished in a very short time is remarkable. Their commitment and hard work will make a difference in our business (RFC) and in the community.”
The video is available to look at on the Regional Fitness Center website.