Noah Chrysler, a fourth-year student in the new media marketing program, is full of fun and creative ideas for video content. One of his many ventures into entertainment and public engagement has been making videos under the persona "The RIT Newsman." Chrysler and his partner, Oscar Estrada, are affiliated with the RIT Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Chrysler and Estrada, a motion picture science major, go to different events and services offered by RIT and post videos about their experiences. The content varies from interviewing participants and organizers of the event to crazier things like Chrysler getting his chest waxed at Shear Global.
Chrysler comes to RIT from Manlius, N.Y. He is involved with an improv group called Work In Progress and was previously involved with the a cappella group Eight Beat Measure. Aside from his RIT Newsman videos, Chrysler has also produced videos about Pokemon and other video games on his YouTube channel.
Question: What brought you to RIT?
Answer: I had narrowed it down to RIT, Ithaca College and a few other schools. I chose RIT because when I came to campus I had a lot of fun and I saw that they had a great engineering program. My dad is a car mechanic and really appreciates people who know how to work with their hands, so I decided that engineering would be the way to go. But that didn't really matter in the end because I later switched to being a new media marketing major.
Q: What about new media marketing stuck out to you as a major?
A: I think in my freshman year I started to get really paranoid about waking up one day at a job that I wasn't passionate about. The idea of not loving what I did really stressed me out, so I started to critically evaluate what I enjoyed doing in the past and what I was good at. I sort of wrapped those strengths together and figured that new media marketing was the best track to take if I wanted to make a career out of what I loved. It was a really hard process to be honest with yourself and tell your parents, 'Hey I don't want to build industrial buildings, I want to make people laugh on YouTube like the people I grew up watching.' Luckily, my parents are the best people ever so they supported me after they realized this was my dream and what that dream really was.
Q: How did you come up with the idea for the RIT Newsman videos?
A: I really wanted to make something that would show RIT's uniqueness and its culture, and I wanted to make something that would be appreciated by the students who are directly involved with that culture. I was also missing all of these events on campus. Like, I didn't know Mud Tug and FreezeFest would be so cool. I thought it would be a good idea to go to these different events that no one knows about and bottle up the cool and fun energy there so I could make cool content that could be viewed passively.
Q: When did your RIT Newsman videos pick up in popularity?
A: It was around the time we released the video about me getting my chest waxed. People realized, 'Oh, he is willing to get his hair ripped out to make funny videos. This is great! I'll share that.' I think that was the first one and on that video we got around 6,000 to 8,000 views, and we were like, 'All right, we're onto something.' The first time I truly realized that we picked up in popularity I was out on campus and this dude came up to me and was like, 'I was watching this video, are you the RIT Newsman?' and I was like, 'Yeah!' And it was great.
Q: How do you choose what events to cover?
A: Unless you do something that people actually care about, no one is going to watch your content. You need to follow the attention and follow the people. We looked at what the most widely attended events were on campus and decided to do those. It's either follow the attention, or create or showcase, a novelty, about something that will make people click the thumbnail and check it out. We also look into events that people may not know about so we can spread the word about it.
Q: What has been your favorite part of being the RIT Newsman?
A: When you make something that people are legitimately excited about and they smile and light up when they talk about it, it's the best feeling ever. It sounds really narcissistic and egocentric but I love that feeling of having someone be really excited and come up to tell me they saw my content. It's also amazing to meet so many cool people and talk to them and learn about things that I never thought I would really learn about.
Q: What are your plans for after you graduate?
A: I want to build a portfolio of video entertainment content and send it to as many people that I respect and admire as possible to see if I can work with them. I also want to move to New York City and do some improv on stage and try to get paid for it on the side. I've always wanted to work for College Humor, and I've really considered working for BuzzFeed, Vox or a company that makes entertainment content online. I want to do something fulfilling that I will enjoy.
Felicia Swartzenberg compiles "Student Spotlights" for University News. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org with suggestions.