Eye on KELOLAND: Setting the stage for future storytellers


It’s now been just over three weeks since we started bringing you the news from our brand new set.

But that doesn’t mean the familiar news desks that you watched for years are out of the spotlight.

Riley Tuffs is a senior in the Sioux Falls School District, but he’s already getting an idea of what it’s like to work in TV news.

“Yeah, I definitely have an interest in it. I would say more sports stuff would be my kind of thing,” Senior Riley Tuffs said.

No matter what kind of news it is, the co-anchor and his classmates are now delivering the headlines from a different desk.

“Yeah, I feel like I’m on KELO,” Tuffs said.

That’s because the desk KELOLAND anchors delivered the news from for years now has a new home in the TV studio at CTE Academy in Sioux Falls.

“It’s been fun. The kids have really liked it. It’s a little smaller than what we had before, a little bit more mobile,” CTE Academy Media Arts Instructor Nate Hoffman said.

The set piece comes with a few more bells and whistles than the program’s previous news desk.

“It’s more professional looking. It has more wires. We can wire stuff into it. It has lights that light up underneath people’s faces. It’s just kind of a neat element to add to our broadcast, just kind of an update and makes everything in the studio feel newer,” Hoffman said.

The CTE Academy isn’t the only place where you’ll find a piece of the old set.

A desk reporters often used during newstime is now at the University of Sioux Falls.

One way students are using it is for an interview segment called Java Talk.

“We’re so happy to have it utilized with our television production class so we can continue to grow as future people who want to be involved in telling the news, sharing stories,” USF Sophomore Apolonia Davalos said.

“Teaching video production at this point with YouTube and everybody using video for everything, we still need in a media studies program a real life example of how to do,” USF Assistant Professor of Media Studies Nancy Sutton said.

But, like most things, TV production costs money.

“If you go to YouTube and you look up colleges there are a whole lot of colleges that can’t afford a set and they’re sitting behind a table and the professionalism is just not there. If you can’t give them a real world experience in media studies it’s really difficult for them to see themselves in that position out in the world,” Sutton said.

“We’re trying to make our broadcasting classes as authentic as possible so that students have a headstart when they go to college or go directly into the workforce. We’re trying to prepare them to work in a variety of television industries and do a variety of jobs in the television industry,” Hoffman said.

While Riley is still considering what his potential career in the industry might be, this TV experience is helping him picture the possibilities.

“I’m looking forward to the rest of the semester,” Tuffs said.

The desks weren’t the only pieces that found new homes.

Some of our lighting equipment went to the University of South Dakota.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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