Grand View Photographers Cover NAIA Wrestling


While their schoolmates were wrestling toward a national championship at the State Fairgrounds March 1-3, eight Grand View student and alumni photographers were covering all the wrestlers’ moves. Billy Connor, Lizz Soda, Amanda Gabbert, Sarah Jacobs and alumna Jodi Jurik worked the matches as official photographers for the NAIA, feeding the organization’s national website and posting galleries for each of the six sessions online.

Connor and Jurik also transmitted deadline pictures for the Great Falls, Montana Tribune and Burlington, Iowa Hawk Eye newspapers of their local competitors. In addition, Veronica Payne was shooting for the Grand Views student newspaper and videographers Kevin Waldron and Aly Merschman were contracted by NeuLion to help live stream video of the final matches Saturday evening. 
“It was a great learning experience for our students,” said Doug Wells, assistant professor of communication who was contacted by Grand View Sports Information Director Molly Brown about supplying photos for the NAIA. The NAIA required images from all six sessions as well as coverage of the association’s wrestling clinic, awards banquet and podium award presentations. Action images needed to be uploaded to the NAIA website within an hour of the end of each session.
“Though the NAIA doesn’t pay the student photographers as such, they are allowed to sell the photos they took during the competition. Billy Connor constructed a web site, contacted the various schools, made posters and uploaded well over 2,000 images,” said Wells. All the photographers worked at least one of the sessions, and earned “shares” according to how much they contributed. By Monday evening the site had recorded over 40,000 hits.

Picture on this pages is a photo by Jodi Jurik.  The photo featured with the caption on the article is by Billy Connor.