In a feature by the New York Times, tech-savvy students are highlighted for their critical role during the COVID-19 pandemic. One such standout is Jonathan Boring, a dual enrollment student from Marina High School in the Huntington Beach Union High School District. His dual enrollment in the West Hills Coalinga College courses was coordinated by 2CPR Group. Boring, utilizing his AVIXA training, has become an integral part of his community by spearheading AV services for his church's youth group's virtual activities. As the demand for students with digital skills has risen dramatically during the pandemic, Boring and his peers have shifted from being stereotyped as 'nerds' to becoming the unsung heroes of the digital age.
Original article at the New York Times by Jon Marcus
Full Article Below
From Nerds to Heroes
By Jon Marcus
When the New York Youth Symphony had to cancel its spring concert at Carnegie Hall because of the coronavirus, its members decided to collaborate on at least one piece, remotely.
There was no question who would record and edit the performance of this complicated work — the second movement from Mahler’s Symphony No.1, “Titan” — performed in isolation by each of the orchestra’s 71 members: Raina Tung. The video kid.
“I’m always that person people go to when they want to make their video,” said Ms. Tung, a senior at New Explorations Into Science, Technology and Math High School in Manhattan and a violinist in the orchestra, who has had her own YouTube channel since she was in eighth grade.
As educators try to cope with the disruption caused by the pandemic, they have come to rely on their in-house experts: AV nerds, the longstanding victims of popular-culture persecution.
“They are absolutely unsung heroes,” said Benny Caswell, a longtime adviser to an AV club (motto: “We Make Geeks”) at a boys’ school in Australia and a regional manager for the audiovisual industry association AVIXA, which gives college scholarships to students with AV skills.
“Their almost innate ability to grasp the concepts of technology is something older generations just don’t have,” he said.
Take Jonathan Boring. A senior at Marina High School in Huntington Beach, Calif., he leads the AV team for his church’s youth group, which has connected locked-down congregants remotely for weekend services and sermons — adding polished panoramic introductions and even an animation to precede the story of Joshua.
“If you don’t have the sound guy, no one in the congregation can hear you,” said Mr. Boring, who has been getting paid for editing videos since he was 13. And with so many people turning online, he said, “there’s a high demand” for people with knowledge like his.
Technology “is all we have right now,” Ms. Tung said. “These types of online skills are much more respected. Now it’s definitely more quote-unquote ‘cool’” to have them.
And after this, Mr. Boring said, “we won’t be called nerds anymore.”