UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Just four days away from leading a 46-hour webcast for hundreds of thousands of viewers, Jenny Leader is calmer than you might expect.
Leader is one of three executive producers of 46 LIVE, the student-produced livestream of the Penn State Dance Marathon, which annually attracts viewers in more than 100 countries.
“We have big things left to do, but I am not worried about it,” said Leader, a senior who earned her advertising/public relations degree in December and will add a journalism degree in May. With some scheduling and package editing remaining, she and the 46 LIVE team are confident about their year-long preparations to cover THON 2020 in the Bryce Jordan Center Feb. 21- 23.
Online coverage of THON from 46 LIVE will begin at 5 p.m. Feb. 21, one hour before all 707 dancers stand for the weekend, and continue until after the annual dance marathon that raises money to battle pediatric cancer ends at 4 p.m. Feb. 23. The livestream will be available at THON’s website.
Leader and her co-executive producers, Lee Mills and Krista Smith, both junior telecommunications majors, will lead a team of more than 65 student crew members and hosts in their coverage of the largest student-run philanthropy in the world.
The broadcast serves an important role in bringing the THON experience to families at Penn State Children’s Hospital who are unable to attend, students around campus or studying abroad, alumni who remain invested in the cause and donors who tune in all around the world. In addition, 46 LIVE is also an incredible learning opportunity for students in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications.
Leading up to the broadcast, more than 30 student crew members go through training to master the equipment necessary to bring the weekend to life online. They also work to find ways to produce well-rounded coverage of the event from both a storytelling and technology standpoint.