CAS department facilities
DeVos Communications Center
This is the 58,000 square-foot DeVos Communication Center at Calvin College. Opened in 2002, this cutting-edge facility is the home for the Department of Communication Arts and Sciences’ 21 faculty, numerous staff, and nearly 400 undergraduate majors. It also houses the Department of Political Science, the Paul Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics, and the Calvin Workshops in Communication. Theatre faculty are here as well, though our theatre facilities are located elsewhere on campus. The building includes three floors. The below-ground level (actually, a walk-out in the back) is primarily for audio, video and film production. The ground level is public space for six “smart classrooms” with all kinds of technology, a computer classroom, a small café, and an open lobby with lots of flexible seating. The top floor houses offices, along with the speech and hearing clinic.
Bytwerk Video Theater
The Bytwerk Video Theater is a 150-seat, barrier-free venue for viewing student and professional productions. This acoustically superb space is home to various film, video, and television courses, and also is used for movie viewings sponsored through organizations like the Calvin Film Forum and the Film Arts Committee. We hold here the Calvin Media Festival, at which students publicly premiere their best audio and video work from the previous semester. The surround-sound system and high-end digital projector provide state-of-the-art viewing experiences. Pictured is our chief engineer, Jake Bosmeijer. Read more about our Film & Media Studies and Media Production programs.
TV Control Rooms
This is a combination classroom and TV control room. The equipment is almost entirely digital. The four large plasma monitors can show live and preview shots as well as special graphics and imported signals. In addition, four video cameras mounted from the ceiling behind the plasma monitors can shoot images of the equipment controls during production, allowing students to view on the plasma monitors how the control equipment is being used. Whereas most video and TV control rooms are too tiny for adequate instruction, ours is intended to be used comfortably for teaching as well as actual production. Read more about Film & Media Studies and Media Production programs at Calvin College.
Film and Video Production Studios
The spacious film and video production studio in the lower level of the DeVos Communication Center includes room for several sets. The primary teaching set, shown above, is easily reconfigured for talk shows, news broadcasts, and interview segments. A second set is for Calvin College’s award-winning weekly public television program, Inner Compass, produced with the help of a paid student crew. Our exceptional studio also is used by various companies and non-profit organizations. Because video and film productions require many different skills — producing, directing, writing, editing and the like — our Theatre, Media Production, and Film & Media Studies programs include a wide range of overlapping courses, such as set design, acting, and lighting.
Digital editing suites
The DeVos Communication Center production floor includes six digital (non-linear) video editing suites and four audio editing suites. The larger video suites are equipped with two Avid editing systems, and offer plenty of space for collaborative group work.
The audio and video editing systems are connected via fiber optics to an Avid Unity server so students can store their massive video files and retrieve them from any of our editing systems. Final Cut Pro is available on campus computers as well.
Most of the teaching spaces in the DeVos Communication Center are “smart classrooms,” equipped with useful but unobtrusive technologies. Projectors are hung from high ceilings while screens are located in the front corner of each classroom rather than in the center. Smart classrooms include a computer with a broadband Internet connections, as well as VCR and DVD players. Combining this technology with configurable desks and tables, we can fluidly accommodate the diverse needs of particular classes and learners.