Student Stars

Spotlight on graduates of the Communication Media Program at Capital Community College

Ayanna Wright
Class of 2014
ayanna-wright-194x326pxAyanna was a veteran and working mom who had only dabbled in photography when she decided to enter Capital’s Communication Media program. She wasn’t familiar with much else in the field. That changed quickly as she tried everything and learned all about TV production and creating a story.“My favorite experience at Capital was directing my own TV show in Professor Thomassen’s TV Producation class,” she said. “That class solidified that I had made the right choice!”Ayanna freelanced a bit after graduation, assisting on commercials for boutiques and music videos by local artists. She was able to answer key questions and setup camera shots during a job interview at Fox 61 where she now works as a Production Technician.“The majority of what I do – I learned at Capital,” Wright stated. “I run cameras, manage the floor, run the prompter and work in audio.”Ayanna is also continuing her education as a film major at Quinnipiac University and is able to use what she learned about TV and apply it to film. Although the two areas are very different, she says the fundamentals are the same: visual appeal and creating a story – tools she learned at Capital and that she uses on a daily basis.Looking forward, her main focus is to gain more experience. She knows to rise in the ranks in her profession she will have to know everyone’s job. Eventually, Ayanna says she would love to direct and produce live news. When you watch the live lottery drawings – she is the one directing. Her ultimate goal is to move into write and produce her own television show.To anyone who isn’t sure what they want to do in this field Ayanna Wright’s message is “Try everything and don’t let fear stop you from what you want. The reward is so worth it in the end!”
VANESSA AND PEDRO RIVERA
Class of 2014

Vanessa and Pedro Rivera agree that Capital Community College (CCC) is frequently a “family affair,” and in 2014, graduated together as husband and wife Vanessa Rivera arrived in Hartford from Colombia in 2007 and enrolled at CCC as an ESL student in fall 2008. Pedro Rivera lived in Hartford all his life and attended CCC for its convenient location and state-of-the-art television studio. Both were pursuing degrees in communication media, and in fall 2010, they met when attending the same television production course.
Both Vanessa and Pedro have a passion for media and are living their dreams. After an internship at WUVN-CH 18 Hartford, Vanessa was hired as a full-time marketing assistant for the station which specializes in Spanish programming. Pedro interned at WFSB-TV3 and works as a freelancer for various news stations and is also a video editor for “El Show De Analeh.” The ambitious couple has also started their own production company, PNV Productions, and cover weddings and numerous Latino events in the community.
MADELINE CONTRERAS
Class of 2009

Madeline Contreras successfully completed an independent study project in which she explored new media, its impact on traditional mass communication channels, and its effect on the career landscape. She produced weekly journals, a summative paper entitled Talking with Media Professionals: A True Learning Experience, and an audio podcast featuring excerpts from the four interviews she conducted with media professionals. Madeline created an NPR-style audio podcast that will soon be among the course materials used in the Careers in Media course. She expects to graduate with a degree in Communication Media in May 2009.
DOUG FITZ
Class of 2008

StudentStar-4Doug Fitz came to Capital with prior video production experience and he quickly became a valuable team member on a multitude of video productions – whether for students’ projects, El Show de Analeh, CSN: Capital Student News, or professional productions in the Academic Media Technology Department. Doug learned more about the inner workings of state government during his internship with CT-N: The Connecticut Network. A 2008 graduate in Communication Media, Doug plans to join the U.S. Coast Guard, where he hopes to become either the one rescuing people, or – working in the public relations division – the one filming his fellow colleagues rescuing people.
MICHAEL MORRIS
Class of 2008
StudentStar-3Michael Morris developed his production skills by participating in Capital’s community partnership productions of El Show de Analeh, a Spanish-language community affairs program that broadcasts on WUVN-TV Channel 18. He produced several short films including a documentary about the city of Hartford entitled Children Learn What They Live. After completing his internship with Captured Time Productions in Litchfield, CT, Michael was offered employment from Universal Studios in California. He looks forward to his newfound career in the Media Arts. Michael graduated cum laude from Capital in 2008.
HENRY VIVAR
Class of 2008
StudentStar-2Henry Vivar enrolled in the Communication Media program after taking Web design and media production courses in his native Peru. He contributed extensively to several student production teams and took it upon himself to build the original web site for CSN: Capital Student News. Henry’s internship experience at WUVN-TV Channel 18 was so positive that his supervisor offered him a full-time position upon completion of the program. Henry graduated cum laude from Capital in 2008 and is continuing his studies at the University of Hartford School of Communication, where he received a substantial academic scholarship.
Read Henry’s Student Spotlight.
LILLIE LAVADO
Class of 2007
StudentStar-1Lillie Lavado first came to Capital with a vague inquiry about teaching English as a second language. After consulting with the Communication Media faculty, she decided that the degree program fit her varied interests in politics, media, and intercultural studies. Lillie provided outstanding editorial leadership for CSN: Capital Student News as part of an independent study project, participated in the Connecticut State Legislative Intern program, and became a published author and photographer as an intern with The Hartford News. In 2007, Lillie became the first Communication Media graduate. She transferred to Trinity College’s Individualized Degree Program to pursue a self-designed Bachelor of Arts program.