Posted September 3, 2010 Atlanta, GA
Georgia Tech Media Relations
And the Emmy goes to … the Mini 500? Georgia Tech’s 2009 public service announcement (PSA), featuring the annual homecoming tricycle race known as the Mini 500, has won a regional Emmy in the category "Best Television Commercial Produced in the Southeast."
“We try to create a spot that will stand out and position Georgia Tech as place where technology and creativity thrive,” said Katie Bows Taylor, director of marketing communications. “It is a real honor to win a regional Emmy really because it demonstrates the creativity and skill of our team.”
Conceptualized and produced by Georgia Tech Communications & Marketing, that team included more than 40 students, faculty, and staff from across campus. The core contributors were led by Taylor, videographer Maxwell Guberman, marketing communications manager Brooke Novak, associate vice president of communications Jim Fetig, director of online communications Jeff Smith, web developer Fletcher Moore, student communications manager Sarah Mallory, production coordinator Christine Brazill, and director of client relations David Arnold.
Student involvement was vital in adding authenticity to the message, taking the production from a reenactment of a Georgia Tech tradition to an actual celebration of the moment. All of the announcement’s actors are Georgia Tech students; many of the student extras made the posters and signs that appear in crowd scenes. The Ramblin’ Reck Club and Student Communications Committee were instrumental in recruiting campus supporters.
“Our students are the heart and soul of Georgia Tech,” said Tayor. “Using our students is a great way to showcase what is unique about the Georgia Tech experience. This spot shows the serious side of Tech, but also shows that students here have fun.”
Earlier this year, the PSA won a Grand Gold Award for Audio Visual Communications, Television category from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), Southeast Region.
Communications & Marketing annually produces a 30-second PSA that airs during Georgia Tech’s nationally televised football and basketball games. The 2010 PSA will air with the launch of the fall football season in August.
Creativity, innovation and the interaction between Georgia Tech fourth-year College of Architecture student Caity Jiminez and Shimon, an improvisational robotic marimba player created by researchers in the Center for Music Technology, take center stage in Institute’s latest public service announcement (PSA).
Georgia Tech’s Communication & Marketing team’s goal was to replicate the success of last year’s PSA spot that won a regional Emmy and to identify an idea that epitomizes Georgia Tech’s legendary heritage and limitless future.
The PSA begins with a close up of one of Shimon’s impressive robotic arms striking the marimba and then transitions to a shot of Jiminez striking her drums. The two then interact in a “dueling banjos” format, culminating with the familiar Ramblin’ Wreck song, a familiar tune for all of the Georgia Tech community.
Shimon was developed by a team of researchers led by Gil Weinberg, director of the Center for Music Technology with the support of the National Science Foundation.
“Shimon is designed to create meaningful and inspiring musical interactions with humans, leading to novel music experiences and outcomes,” said Weinberg. “The goal of the project is to create real-time musical collaborations between human and robotic musicians that would capitalize on the combination of their unique strengths.”
According to Weinberg these strengths are emotions and expressivity on the human side and the processing power and mechanical skill of the robot.
Jimenez said she’s always loved Georgia Tech and has played the drums since a very early age.
“I began playing the drum set when I was around six year’s old,” said Jiminez, who is in her third year of being on Georgia Tech’s drum line. “I really enjoyed being a part of the PSA. The work environment was a blast, and by the end of the day, almost everyone had learned to twirl a drum stick.”
Jimenez, an Architecture major, recently received her LEED Accreditation and hopes to use it to decrease the waste that is typically associated with construction.
The PSA will air during Georgia Tech’s televised football and basketball games and additional information can be found on the PSA website.
The Georgia Institute of Technology is one of the world's premier research universities. Ranked seventh among U.S. News & World Report's top public universities and the eighth best engineering and information technology university in the world by Shanghai Jiao Tong University's Academic Ranking of World Universities, Georgia Tech’s more than 20,000 students are enrolled in its Colleges of Architecture, Computing, Engineering, Liberal Arts, Management and Sciences. Tech is among the nation's top producers of women and minority engineers. The Institute offers research opportunities to both undergraduate and graduate students and is home to more than 100 interdisciplinary units plus the Georgia Tech Research Institute.