Broadcast assistant marks almost 26 years at school

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Broadcast assistant marks almost 26 years at school

Broadcast Assistant Carlos Imperial sits in the control room of the radio and television studio.

Broadcast Assistant Carlos Imperial sits in the control room of the radio and television studio.

The Magnet Tribune: Rachell Ramirez

Broadcast Assistant Carlos Imperial sits in the control room of the radio and television studio.

The Magnet Tribune: Rachell Ramirez

The Magnet Tribune: Rachell Ramirez

Broadcast Assistant Carlos Imperial sits in the control room of the radio and television studio.

Rachell Ramirez, Staff Writer

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From learning TV production from his father to working 26 years at Vidal M. Treviño, Carlos Imperial is the broadcast assistant at VMT.

Imperial is just one of two people left on the faculty and staff who helped open the school in 1993.

He started working in television with his father who worked for the city of Laredo Public Access Channel. At age 13, he said he was introduced to TV production.

Imperial said he always wanted to be part of something creative and enjoyed photography and videotaping. He also learned audio production and music production from his father.

When he was in college he heard about VMT hiring, looking for someone who knew about television production and video editing, He then applied and was hired.

One of the challenges for Imperial is keeping up with the new technology throughout the years.

“If technology changes then I need to change too and not stay behind,” Imperial said.

The kids are the same; they have the same character but are played by different people.”

— Carlos Imperial

“When VMT started we used to videotape using three-quarter-inch tape then we went to beta and to nonlinear equipment and started to digitized video and using computers. It’s all different now than from when we started,” Imperial said. ”Now our cameras have become smaller and more efficient and we have gone from using large SD cards to smaller ones now and we get to use more programs in the computer with more features.”

One of the highlights for Imperial is when students who haven’t thought about the future come to VMT and learn something they want to do for the rest of their lives.

“We’ve had students come here that have an interest in the field and others have no idea that they were interested but they develop an interest. Once they start learning, they develop it. Then some of them have gone out to make a career of it and are reporters at networks like CNN and Fox. They become people behind the camera, and news reporters and photographers,” Imperial said.

He has noticed that students haven’t changed throughout the years.

“The kids are the same; they have the same character but are played by different people,” Imperial said.

One of the accomplishments Imperial has done besides being at VMT for 26 years is keeping up with the new technology and changes throughout the years.

He said he didn’t see himself working at VMT for 26 years since he was attending college. It was a job to keep him going to college and to pay his rent since he lived alone, he said. He then realized that he liked VMT and stayed.

When VMT started we used to videotape using three-quarter-inch tape then we went to beta and to nonlinear equipment and started to digitized video and using computers.”

— Carlos Imperial

The first semester in 1993, when VMT started at its downtown campus, he said the class didn’t have an official classroom. He had to borrow cameras and equipment and sometimes students would have class outside at St. Peter’s Plaza or go to the Laredo Civic Center until the broadcast program moved into its permanent location in the 1700 block of Houston Street.

“I’ve been here for so long that it just feels like a second home,” Imperial said.

He said he feels a sentimental attachment to the school since he saw it develop from zero to what it is today.

Even though Imperial said he qualifies to retire in 5 years, he sees himself doing the same thing but in a different place or starting his own business of what he loves doing.