Got a question about the classes, amenities or staff at the Drexel Recreation Center? You could stop by the facility on Drexel University’s University City Campus — or, now, you can try its YouTube page instead.
Thinking about using a personal trainer? You can meet them and learn about their personal philosophies and methods by watching online interviews with them. Want to learn more about barre before taking a class? You could watch a short video showing scenes from the class session and an interview with an instructor.
It’s all part of a new strategy to better tell the important stories of Drexel Recreation Athletics through video, according to Andrew Case, manager of sales and at the Drexel Recreation Center for the Department of Athletics. In the middle of creating a digital strategy for the Rec Center, he hired Courtney Dauer, a sophomore film major in the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, to create videos less than a minute long that could be shared on the Rec Center’s Instagram account. The videos started to add up, so when they looked to store them on the Rec Center’s YouTube page, they realized that it hadn’t been updated in three years and needed to be overhauled.
“Aside from organizing and sorting the older videos, and making aesthetic changes, we started posting one video a week in a number of different series in order to promote different areas of the Drexel Rec Center,” said Case.
Those series include videos highlighting group exercise classes, IMPACT training (the Rec Center’s twice-a-week small group training program), personal training and student staff at the facility. The group exercise, IMPACT training and personal training videos show examples of what classes or programs are offered by featuring scenes shot at real training sessions and interviews with the people who lead them. The student staff interviews, while giving Rec Center users an idea of the people helping the Rec Center run smoothly, are also used by prospective student employees.
Additionally, several individual videos were created for different events run by the Rec Center, including the student involvement fair and the annual indoor triathlon.
“Although each video and series has a separate intended goal, the overall goal of the YouTube revival is to facilitate a place on social media where any possible questions that a person may have about the Rec Center and our programs can be answered in a fun and engaging manner,” said Case.
So far, the Rec Center has posted 26 new videos, all shorter than two minutes, in the past five months. The process of filming changes from video to video, Case said, though usually Dauer will film a training session or class and then interview the trainer or instructor. This usually takes about an hour and a half, with the editing process taking anywhere from a half-hour to six hours, depending on the type of video being created.
Not only are the videos shot and edited by a Drexel student, but the music playing in the background is usually created by Drexel students as well. Currently, Case and Dauer outsource music requests to Drexel’s Mad Dragon Group and music industry program.
“We work with a fantastic group of artists who create content that doesn’t just fit with the videos, but is impressive and enjoyable to listen to,” said Case, who last year worked with student artists like Richfellow, as well as MAD Dragon artists like Darla and JUTAUN, Johnny Popcorn, and the Dispersions. “We are very excited to continue this partnership in order to foster a fully Drexel video service.”
In addition to filming annual or recurring events, Case and Dauer brainstorm topics or ideas that they think would be engaging to people interested in the Rec Center. Future videos will feature the climbing wall, club sports events, and inclusion in membership — all good reasons to subscribe to the page and be sure to keep an eye out!
“There is no end date on the horizon, as we could see these videos as being beneficial for years to come, and we hope to continue the project as long as there are relevant topics for interested patrons,” said Case.