Javelina Broadcast Network reporter participates in halftime show
Super Bowl Sunday is usually spent watching the game and halftime show surrounded by food, family and friends in the comfort of your own home. Not many thoughts are put fourth towards the planning and work that is dedicated to the show being broadcasted globally to the hundred million viewers. Tessie Ledesma, a senior at Texas A&M University- Kingsville got to experience behind the camera as she was selected to help hands on with the production side of Super Bowl Sunday.
Limited to only 50 volunteers Ledesma was initially put on a waiting list as all the spots had been already filled. It wasn’t until two weeks prior to the Super Bowl, she got a call notifying her a spot had opened up on the production crew for pre-game, postgame, and halftime. Ledesma replied to the offer with “of course”.
From Tuesday to Sunday Ledesma having to skip classes was doing eight hour days helping with Fox News, Fox Sports, local television stations from Houston and the production crew of half time performer Lady Gaga.
“You see Lady Gaga freaking out about her halftime show, newscasters doing their prep work, while we still are helping out with cameras or whatever help is needed also as football players, hall of famers and celebrities are walking around. It was an awesome experience.” Ledesma said about some of the sights she saw while volunteering in Houston.
Though just a volunteer gig, Ledesma’s internship past may have helped boost her image for the job. This past summer she was part of an internship with NBC Sports helping out with the NBA Finals, Stanley Cup for the NHL and a couple of major league games for baseball.
“I’ve been on camera, I’ve been behind the camera, now I’m doing production. I got to help out behind the scenes which we really don’t have any live events of this platform come around here. This helped me to get more hands on with the cords and putting together the stages, it was just something different.” Ledesma said of how this volunteer work will help in her career.
The entire week is a grand memory for Ledesma but one event stands out amongst others.
“Lady Gaga asking me for a ponytail holder. During her act she throws her holder so during rehearsals she came up to my group and asked if anyone had an extra ponytail holder. I gave her one she said thank you and gave me a hug. That was so cool, she’s really humble and nice.”
Having performed her job up to the standards of the NFL, Ledesma was asked if she would like to return next year to Minnesota to help with the production of Super Bowl LII.
When asked if she had any advice for others wanting to do similar things as she has done Ledesma said “Throw yourself out there and volunteer for anything whether it be out of state or in state. The experience is what counts. Get the experience in because it’ll help on your resume and don’t be afraid to apply for anything because you never know. The worst the can say is no and on to the next opportunity you go.”