Point Loma Nazarene University

Contact: Nicholle Jaramillo

Point TV: Channel 23 Marketing & Promotions Mgr.

Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358

Date: March 26, 2011

Written by: Nicholle Jaramillo



Student-Produced Documentary Gets National Recognition


            Rip, Shred, Tear.  To some, these three words may sound like a papier-mâché project.  For one PLNU junior, though, these three words have evolved into a project that has received global recognition.  Madison Dyer, a film studies major, spent his summer working on a 30-minute surf documentary, Rip Shred Tear,  in conjunction with San Diego’s Captain Fin Surf Company and Hurley. 

            A standard surf movie takes about a year to film.  Dyer and his crew took a different approach by completing all filming in a two-month period.

            “I started shooting in May and we had it all wrapped up by August,” said Dyer. “The whole point of it was to showcase surfing and the long board alternative community in that summer.”

            Dyer was in charge of shooting and editing the film.  Although he had some creative input, the concept alone came from Mitch Abshere, Captain Fin Surf Company owner.  With over 20 hours of footage, a lot of behind the scenes work had to be done to complete a successful project.

            “It was a really good learning experience—especially for the other side of shooting,” said Dyer.  “The scheduling and contacting people was the part I haven’t dealt with, so it was a really good experience.”

            The film has had its premieres across the globe, most notably three in Japan with distribution by Hurley.  With a country geared towards surfing and ‘60s culture, most surfing companies have a Japan branch. 

            Although Dyer spent his summer in the realm of surfing, he has turned his interests toward the more sophisticated side of film in marketing.  As a PLNU marketing intern, Dyer has been responsible for making mini documentaries and commercials that focus on alumni profiles, departmental profiles, professors, business events and even television commercials.

            “Ideally, the stuff I am interested is mostly short stuff, commercials, music videos,” said Dyer.  “I’ve made a few connections with people in  the commercial world, and hope I can try to get away from surfing and get to a strictly professional marketing base.”

            As for personal side projects, Dyer has a couple in the works.  After a successful completion of last year’s short film, Rungs, which won best film at PLNU’s film festival, Dyer is embarking on another short adventure.  The film is being produced in one of the film production courses, and focuses on a guy who secretly cheats on his girlfriend and accidentally sends a text that might get him in trouble.  In an attempt to save himself, he tries to erase the text message while a close friend documents the whole process.  In addition to this, he will also be working with Captain Fin Surf Company on another surf project that will be pitched to Fuel TV.

            It is evident that Dyer possesses the drive and talent to be successful.  Although he has already gained some notoriety for his work, he says that his ethic has started with class projects.  They have inspired him to produce quality work and continue to drive him to expand his mind creatively.    

            “Having professors and peers that have pushed you to do stuff out of your comfort zone--as repetitive as a lot of school projects can get--really pushes you to work under a deadline and learn the whole process,” said Dyer.  “Really, I have both of those to be thankful for.”


For more information regarding Madison Dyer and the projects he is involved in, please contact him at 





Communications & Theatre


Point Loma Nazarene University

Contact: Nicholle Jaramillo

Point TV: Channel 23 Marketing & Promotions Mgr.

Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358

Date: February 25, 2011

Written by: Nicholle Jaramillo



PLNU Students and Faculty Attend the 2011 Sundance Film Festival


            Every year film buffs travel to the nation’s largest independent film festival: Sundance in Park City, Utah.  The weeklong event is a premier showcase for American and international independent filmmakers.  This year, a group of PLNU students and Point TV staff traveled to the snowy city to preview some of 2011’s dramatic, documentary, feature-length and short films.

            Ashley Gulden, a senior film studies major, experienced the festival as part of a PLNU course taught by Dr. Alan Hueth.  Students were responsible for reading and discussing Craig Detweiler's book, “Into The Dark.” Detweiler’s book presents ideas of finding God in some of the most popular, dark Hollywood films.  Gulden says the book challenged her to think in different ways about film.

            “It expanded and challenged my views in regards to the content of film but it also reminded me of the power of God and his ability to reach people in dark theatres,” said Gulden.

            While at the festival, Gulden was responsible for reviewing a variety of films and writing ten, two-page film analyses and one term paper.  She gained admiration for the challenging world of independent film, and also realized how various films challenged her own personal beliefs.

            Sundance is all about afflicting the comfortable.  These films made you reflect on your beliefs and pre-conceived notions of life and they challenged those views,” said Gulden.  

“It was emotionally draining to sit through five films a day, but it molded my stance on filmmaking and who I am as a filmmaker.”

               Over 100 students and faculty also participated in the Windrider Forum as a part of Sundance.  Windrider is a non-profit, Christian organization that brings together Christians from all over the country to meet, screen, and talk about films from a Christian perspective.  This includes students and faculty from Biola University, Taylor University, Fuller Theological Seminary, Regent University, and other schools.

                     “The Windrider Forum is great for creating some focused reflection, thinking, and discussion about the films that we see at Sundance.  And the input from other students and faculty helps us all come together and learn from each other,” said Hueth.

               Windrider also links Christians students and faculty with the professional filmmakers.

Interactions included everything from question and answer sessions with Vera Farmiga about her

film “Higher Ground,” to a personal sit-down with the director of photography of "Fred and


                        Erika Scopelli, Point TV productions manager, was inspired by “Like Crazy” director Drake Doremus: “He drew from raw, real experience to bring the love story to life, and it encouraged me to write about what I know,” said Scopelli. “The best stories come from personal experience.”  

            Andrew Norbeck, a sophomore film studies major, was one of many who took in all that Sundance had to offer.

            “I believe filmmakers are the poets and storytellers of our time,” said Norbeck. “Students from all over the country meeting in one building to experience and discuss one of the biggest and best film gatherings in America in the world, how could you pass on this opportunity?”

            While some students attended the festival as a class, Point TV staff also had an opportunity to join in the fun.  As representatives of student media, Sundance was all about making connections with industry professionals and students alike.  Sarah Willer, a senior broadcast journalism major, was able to meet up with PLNU alumni Destin Daniel Cretton, Beckah Van Bruggen and Joel P West, who are already making a name for themselves in the film industry.

            “Being able to attend Sundance opens up the door for film and broadcast students to make real connections with people who are already in the industry,” said Willer. “It's more than networking, it's building friendships.” 


Point TV staff and students Sundance 2011 “must sees”:


Higher Ground

Take Shelter

Little Birds

Like Crazy


Martha Marcy May Marlene



For more information regarding PLNU’s trip to Sundance, please contact Alan Hueth at


Communications & Theatre


Point Loma Nazarene University

Contact: Nicholle Jaramillo

Point TV: Channel 23 Marketing & Promotions Mgr.

Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358

Date: March 4, 2011

Written by: Nicholle Jaramillo



TV Studio Upgrading to HDTV This Summer


            Television studio technology continues to evolve, and PLNU is staying up-to-date in this evolution.  This coming fall, 2011, PLNU film, television, and broadcast journalism students will begin producing their shows in high definition television (HDTV).  This will include a four-camera studio (an upgrade from the present three-camera standard-definition system), and will include a camera on a jib--allowing students to record “flying camera shots” in the studio.  The cameras will also have state-of-the-art remote control pan, tilt, and zoom functions—allowing a single operator to control all four cameras at once while in the control room.

            Three people have been involved in the process of getting this new system approved.  These include Dr. Alan Hueth, professor of communication, Dr. Clark Greer, and Rick Moncauskas, PLNU TV Studio Operations Manager.  They have been working together for years to create a workable plan for the renovation. 

            “We have been proposing this for the last four years. We got turned down for three years—due to the economic downturn and decreased budgets on campus,” said Hueth.  “But we kept coming back, and they (PLNU administrators) finally decided to invest the money.”

            The duo had to create a full business proposal, a rationale, what was needed, a time the equipment was needed by, and competitive bids from vendors.  When PLNU’s television studio was originally built 13-years ago, the plan was carried out by TV Magic, an internationally recognized broadcast system integrator.  Two ex-TV Magic employees, Gus Allman, a TV Magic engineer, and Pat Thompson, a TV Magic sales manager, broke off to create their own systems integrator called Triton Technologies.  Moncauskas approached the company about the HDTV project.

            “We gave the integrator Triton Tech our budget,” said Moncauskas.  “We said we want these kinds of things, this kind of equipment, this kind of change and they agreed to it.”

            Moncauskas will act as project supervisor—essentially overseeing Triton Tech in this renovation.   In addition to this, he, Hueth, and Dr. Clark Greer, who teaches in the broadcast journalism major, will spend a week in Las Vegas, NV, at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) conference April 9-14, 2011.  Here they will be finalizing equipment selections for the new system.

            Although buying and playing with equipment may seem like a fun task, it is also a serious and important one.  The faculty were very careful in determining what is the best system for PLNU and the shows that students produce on a regular basis.   

            “Rick, Clark, and I have really tried to see what’s out there—in terms of equipment, and choose items that work for all of the shows that students must produce each semester for Point TV—Channel 23, our student-operated cable channel,” said Hueth.  “After having the vendors in, and testing the equipment and seeing what it can do, we have a pretty good idea of what is needed.”

            The renovation is set for this summer and is expected to take a month to complete, with training for faculty and staff occurring prior to the fall, 2011, semester.    Meanwhile, the students will begin their training on the new system in the various production classes that they’ll be taking this coming fall semester. 



For more information regarding Channel 23’s studio renovation, please contact Alan Hueth at and Rick Moncauskas at





Communications & Theatre


Point Loma Nazarene University

Contact: Nicholle Jaramillo

Point TV: Channel 23 Marketing & Promotions Mgr.

Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358

Date: March 18, 2011

Written by: Nicholle Jaramillo




Dreaming Big, Fulfilling a Dream:

Recent PLNU Alumnus Gets Job Promotions at DreamWorks


            There is one thing that some college seniors spend endless nights losing sleep over: post college employment.  One PLNU graduate, Shelby Martin (a 2009 PLNU alumna) took matters of landing her dream job into her own hands, and this has led to two promotions in the last two years. 

Her first promotion came right after she ended her DreamWorks internship on December 11, 2009.

            Martin sought out an internship with DreamWorks Animation in search of a challenge. Without a PLNU course or curriculum on animation, she wanted to learn about the process and something she had never done before.  She submitted an application without thinking she would be picked.   

            “I submitted an application to DreamWorks and a couple of TV stations in San Diego,” said Martin. “I got a call back from all the news stations, but did not think I would get a callback from DreamWorks. With Jason Carter’s (PLNU, ’04) help and recommendation, it came through.”

            During her time as an intern, Martin fell in love with the company and knew it was the place for her.  However, when the internship was over, Martin was faced with the reality that DreamWorks was not offering any full-time positions for the interns after this particular semester.  So, she pitched an idea to create a new position that she thought the company was in need of:  a Production Assistant in the Show Development Department.   Without any knowledge of how her pitch would be received, the company’s executives saw her passionate drive and offered her a position with the company.  Promotion number one.

            “I was like ‘I love this company, I have a lot of heart and I want to be here,’” said Martin.  “God has blessed me so much with this.  Every door seems to open and seems to work out better than I ever planned.”

            As a show development production assistant, Martin was responsible for a slew of activities involving shows that are in the in-between stage: “not in development and not in production.”  Her department worked on script treatments, pitching ideas for movies to Jeffery Katzenberg, DreamWorks CEO, scheduling meetings, taking notes, handling artwork and much more.  Martin has been extended the opportunity a number of times to take notes during meetings with Katzenberg, who is known for producing movies like Shrek, Madagascar, How to Train Your Dragon and more.

            “Anything can go in those meetings, good or bad.  If you look at a lot of other P.A.’s they don’t get to work with him,” said Martin.  “It’s a neat experience to be in the room, you learn to appreciate what he’s done for the company.”

            Martin’s hard work and dependability soon led to promotion number two: an offer to be the Production Coordinator on Turbo, a film that tells the tale of a garden snail who hopes to become the fastest snail in the world.   With a background in figure-eight racing, Martin has brought some unique features to the film.

            “It’s been great to see an idea develop as an intern, and see that and see how everything has gone forward,” said Martin.  “This new position has been very challenging and I’m learning a lot of new things, so it’s been really great.”

            Regarding future career goals, Martin can see herself still working at DreamWorks 20 years down the road.  She hopes to become an associate producer or executive, but realizes that will be a long hard road to travel.  As per usual, she’s up for the challenge and any new opportunity that comes her way.

            “It’s hard right now. I’m 22, I’ve had a lot of opportunities that a lot of 22 year olds haven’t,” said Martin. “I feel grateful, excited and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else with any other company.”

            In a business that can, at times, be impossible to break into, Martin’s success is something other communication and theatre students can look up to.  For students looking to break into the world of entertainment, she has some simple advice.  Martin says it’s all about persistence and faith.

            “Have faith that God will provide,” said Martin.  “Think out what you want to do, stay committed, keep trying, be open and don’t be discouraged.  It’ll happen if you put yourself out there.”


For more information regarding Shelby Martin’s work with DreamWorks please contact her at




Communications & Theatre


1.    Do students have to attend chapel?
          +    At PLNU, spiritual growth opportunities are priority, so we do ask that our students attend a certain number of chapels each semester.  That number varies, based on several things, including what year you are, if you live on or off campus, etc.  Check out the guidelines here.
2.    How many chapel sessions are offered?
          +    Chapel meets every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning from 9:45 a.m.-10:30 a.m.  There are no classes offered during chapel, so it’s easy to attend!  We also offer an evening based chapel option called Time Out, which is completely facilitated by our students.
3.    Who speaks in chapel?
          +    PLNU is blessed to have several full time staff members who work to make our chapel services amazing.  Our full time chaplain, Mark Carter is connected to our student body not just through speaking in chapel several times a month, but also in staying connected to our student body in many ways.  We see him in chapel, all over campus, with students in our local off campus neighborhood having coffee…he’s even an avid surfer, so you can often find him out catching a wave with students.  Mark is also involved in helping select other speakers for chapel.  Since chapel is offered four times per week, we do our best to keep it varied so it stays relevant in your life.  We have students speak, community leaders, world famous authors, professors, local pastors…the list goes on and on!  See the Spring 2011 schedule here
4.    Can I visit a chapel to get a good idea about what it’s like?
          +    We encourage our visitors to check out chapel!  Let us know when you’re setting up your visit, and plan to visit on a Monday, Wednesday or Friday, and we’ll make it happen!
5.    Is every chapel the same format?
          +    It’s definitely not.  Chapel is offered four times per week, and we want it to be something that’s relevant to you!  Sometimes chapel is music and a speaker.  Sometimes it’s just music.  Sometimes you’ll hear from student speakers.  Sometimes you only meet with your major or class during chapel.  It’s pretty rare that you have the same format of chapel twice in a week! If you want to see what chapel is like, you can check out the chapel archives and listen live to chapel on your computer.
6.    Who does music for chapels?  What’s it like?
          +    PLNU has the best worship music around!  Led by George Williamson, our full time Director of Worship ministries, chapel bands are made up of students, and provide chapels and events with worshipful music each week.  The chapel bands are diverse in everything but quality, so some are acoustic, some are full bands, some focus on traditional music…there are many ways to experience worship at PLNU!
7.    Can I listen to chapel online?
          +    Absolutely.
8.    What’s Time Out?
          +    Offered as a chapel option on Wednesday evenings in PLNU’s Rec Room, Time Out is a time for students to worship through reflection, prayer, scripture, silence, and music. Music is typically led by one of our chapel bands, but we occasionally invite special guests. This weekly meeting provides a time for students to break away from the stress of college and worship with a community of believers in an informal setting.  Time Out is largely planned and facilitated by our students!

Admissions (Undergraduate)

At PLNU, tuition currently covers only 77.5 percent of the education costs for a PLNU student.  In fact, never in the history of our university has tuition covered the entire cost of a student’s education. Who's paying the other 22.5 percent? PLNU receives generous financial support, both large and small, from alumni contributions, donor gifts, corporate sponsorships, and foundations.

For example, if current tuition is $26,500, and a student pays only 77.5 percent of his or her education costs, he or she is getting an unknown scholarship of about $20,000 over the course of four years.

On March 25, PLNU students will celebrate Tuition Freedom Day. The PLNU Alumni Association took the initiative to ASB leaders and Student Congress two years ago. All three have collaborated on designing this event for three years. On this day, PLNU celebrates and thanks the alumni, donors, corporations, and foundations who provide support for our current and future students.   

Students will write thank you notes, get a Tuition Freedom Day t-shirt, enjoy free coffee and pastries, and listen to live entertainment.

Click here to learn more.