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SUNY Plattsburgh Communication Studies Students Awarded for Comedy Segment

The National Broadcast Society has awarded two SUNY Plattsburgh students first place during the 48th annual Electronic Media Competition in Hollywood.

Senior Christopher Cruz and December graduate Andy Tavarez were recognized for their video comedy segment “Mustachinex,” an infomercial parody that ran before their PSTV show “Sketched Out.”

The segment started as a 30-second skit, originating “spur of the moment”, said Tavarez, who saw an actor on TV with a mustache who didn’t usually have one.

“And I thought he looked cooler,” he said.

“We were shooting ideas back and forth,” Cruz said. “They started snowballing.”

The result was a five-minute comical advertisement for a product that grew instant mustaches.

Third Year in a Row for First Place Awards

This is the third year in a row SUNY Plattsburgh students have taken first place in a category at the NBS National Convention, evidence, Professor and Chair Peter Ensel says, of the communication program’s continued growth and talented students.

“It’s a testament to the program, a testament to our students and the type of students we have,” he said, calling them talented and dedicated. “We are very fortunate to have this vehicle (PSTV) to test their skills, to hone their skills.”

The students were among those from about 150 other colleges and universities – schools like Marshall University and University of Miami, which are known for top-notch communication and production programs, Ensel said.

“There are some big-time schools, with some big-time programs,” he said. “But what I’m even more excited about is winning awards in audio, video, production. This tells that our program is strong in several areas.”

‘I’ve Learned A Lot Fast’

For Cruz, the biggest compliment was that he and Taravez created the video for their show, before sending it to NBS. Most entries were created and tailored specifically for the convention.

He credits the professors in the communication department and the hands-on curriculum.

“I’ve learned a lot, fast – working with other students, creating content that is fueled by you. I’ve had a lot of fun.”

Tavarez, who as a freelancer in the Bronx just finished filming a sitcom pilot episode, agrees.

“It’s very hands on, as opposed to other colleges. As a freshman you automatically have classes where you need a camera. PSTV — that’s like a whole other world. It’s like a job; you’re just not getting paid. It prepares you, as opposed to sitting in class, writing an essay. That’s just not as practical.”

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