When sophomore David Blanchard started to work for the insurance company Mass Mutual during summer break, he didn’t know that six months later he would be presenting his own video about the company in front of 500 people.
The second day on the job, Blanchard mentioned to his boss he was a mass communications major, and immediately Blanchard was asked to do a 20 minute documentary presenting a new $59 million project within the company. Blanchard worked all summer shooting the film with his own digital camcorder and edited it on his Mac at home. Last Wednesday he presented his finished product in front of the VP, the CEO and VP’s of several other companies.
“It went well,” said Blanchard. “After the presentation they came up to me and said it exceeded their expectations.”
In fact, Mass Mutual was so pleased with Blanchard’s presentation that they sent him back to Quinnipiac in a limousine. Blanchard said his friends were pretty shocked as he stepped out of the car, while he himself was so excited he couldn’t form a complete sentence.
Blanchard said the best thing about working on this project and doing the presentation was all the connections he made with other people.
“I made a lot of potential connections, and I might have a job in New York for the summer,” he said.
Communications professor Liam O’Brien was teaching the class Blanchard had asked to be excused from when he received an email from Blanchard’s father telling about the successful presentation.
“This is exactly what our students need to be doing,” said O’Brien. “They need to take big risks and put their projects in front of people who are not their peers.”
O’Brien has been a big support for Blanchard throughout this project.
“He is very supportive,” said Blanchard. “If I have any questions I feel comfortable just going to him outside of class and ask questions.”
O’Brien pointed out that it takes guts and perseverance to do a thing like this.
“I am very proud of him,” he said, “as I would be for any student who takes this kind of initiative.”
Blanchard has plans for being a director in the future, and he is currently working on a screenplay he plans to have completed by the end of this semester.
“I’d like to be famous, but not so famous I can’t go to the grocery store and get milk,” he said. “But if you think about it… how many directors do you really know how they look like?”