BISD students produce ad spots to promote CTE programs

March 21, 2019

The Brownsville Independent School District rolled out the red carpet Tuesday morning at Sunrise Mall for the first CTE Film Awards, awarding the top prize to Marcos Perez, a Lopez Early College High School senior, for a 30-second spot that will run for a month on all 16 Cinemark Theater screens at the mall.

The event was the culmination of a friendly competition among Career and Technical Education audio visual classes across the district. In all 58 students from Lopez, Veterans Memorial, Porter, Pace and Brownsville early college high schools submitted entries, CTE coordinator Martha Gonzalez said.

The competition grew out of a video produced by CTE and KBSD ITV staff to promote the hands-on curriculum and industry certifications offered through CTE. The CTE department then challenged students in its audio visual production classes to produce advertising spots to promote CTE programs.

“We proposed a concept, a 30-second commercial, and the response we received was phenomenal,” Gonzalez said.

Tuesday morning the 58 students who together submitted 18 commercials got a police escort from BISD headquarters on Price Road to Sunrise Mall in luxury vehicles provided by Brownsville car dealerships. Once there they were greeted by “paparazzi” consisting of teachers, principals, administrators and BISD board members.

The winning video was announced when it played among the other trailers and ads as students waited to watch a complimentary showing of the new Captain Marvel movie. Afterward they were treated to lunch at Luby’s Cafeteria, complete with Oscar statuettes on the tables. There, Arisbeth Rodriguez, Delilah Flores and Chris Avila, all of Porter, learned that their ad spots would be showing on the mall’s Cinemark screens in the future.

“I actually do want to become a film director,” Perez said after learning he had won and seeing his spot on the big screen. He said he is looking for the best school to pursue that goal, “but for right now I’m practicing at home with my own cameras.”

He added that his AV teacher had inspired him to find just the right music and logo by looking at similar videos. It took about two weeks to produce and edit the spot, he said.

Elena Ortiz, video chief editor at KBSD who helped judge the entries, said Perez’s spot had just the right combination of music, the CTE logo and other elements.

“He was able to project CTE and everything it offers to our students in a very energetic and technical way,” she said.

Juan Chavez, CTE department administrator, said the project served its purpose.

“Our main thing is trying to promote BISD as a whole. We’re also trying to make the community aware of the various programs of study and industry-recognized certifications students can obtain through CTE,” he said.

“We want to make sure that once our students leave high school they have something besides just a diploma, that we’re preparing them for the workforce.” He added, “This is one way for us to showcase our talent.”