Get ready to blow out the candles because MDC-TV is turning 10.
The channel, formerly managed by Miami-Dade County and known then as Cable TAP, has grown into an award-winning TV station in the last decade since MDC took control of it in 2008.
Today it provides content to thousands of households in Miami-Dade County while providing students with a built-in learning laboratory.
“MDC-TV creates video content that supports the mission of Miami Dade College,” said Ariel Rubalcava, senior producer/director of MDC-TV. “We are here to foster education and longtime learning; sometimes we create content with faculty and staff and other times we cover events produced by MDC.”
The majority of the station’s shows are shot at North Campus. Some of them include MDC In Focus, a show that promotes the College’s programs and events, Health Connections, and other programming that highlight the school’s academic areas such as the Miami Culinary Institute and the business program.
Students help with many of the shows. They get experience shooting video, editing, writing scripts, hosting shows, directing, and operating cameras.
“We have interns and volunteers. I send emails letting them know of upcoming projects and they get involved. I try to get involved with each student to see what position they feel they want,” Rubalcava said. “ In TV you can be talent, producer, editor, videographer or a combination of two. There are also management positions which deal more with the legal aspect of the business.”
The channel has attracted some top-flight talent along the way. Rubalcava, who oversees day-to-day operations at the station, has worked as a producer and editor at Telemundo and as a director at KPRC TV, the NBC channel in Houston, Texas.
On-air personality James Pierre, an award-winning journalist with nearly two decades of experience, hosts various shows and producer Tony Leal, who previously worked for Univision and the Home Shopping Network, are a few examples.
The hard work is paying off for the upstart station that can be viewed on AT&T U-Verse (Channel 99) and on Comcast (Channel 78). It has garnered several accolades including a coveted Telly Award. In 2016, the station won a Suncoast Emmy, a regional version of the Emmy Awards.
With thousands of hours of programming under its belt, MDC-TV continues to broadcast seven days a week in English, Spanish, French, and Creole, keeping the community they serve informed.
“This station has been transformed into what it is today over the last 10 years,” said MDC-TV post-production supervisor Maikel Garcia, who has been with the station from the start. “It has always stepped forward to serve the students and the community.”
For more information about MDC-TV and its programming, go to www.mdc.edu/mdctv/