Club Spotlight: Villanova University Tech Crew


Courtesy of Instagram: @vutechcrew

VUTC members preparing for “acapellooza”, one of the many events the group covers.

Emma Cahill, Staff Writer

With every campus activity, there is a group of Villanovans behind the scenes that allow for it to run smoothly. Whether it is Hoops Mania, Food Truck Friday or the CAT game watches, the Villanova University Tech Crew (VUTC) brings these events to life.

VUTC is a student-run organization that offers professional event production services for campus events. It specializes in audio, lighting, and other technical aspects of events, and enhances every event held with these skills.

“With our equipment and staff members, we help clients achieve what they envision for an event,” junior member Terry Yuan said.

During the 2020-21 school year, VUTC played an integral role in providing some normalcy during troubling times.

“We helped maintain a sense of community by building outdoor movie nights and setups for food trucks with fire pits and live band performances,” Yuan said.

More recently, VUTC helped put on the immensely popular CAT game watches, where students gathered to watch the men’s basketball team away games. The two major components of these events were lights and video. Sophomore Joshua Coogle was the Event Manager and Lighting Head Tech, and he was in charge of the lighting for these game watches.

“CAT wanted to go big for these game watches, so I got to use a lot of unique lights for the show,” Coogle said. “I even worked with fixtures I had never used before, so it was a lot of fun being able to program them.”

Coogle’s efforts had a tremendous impact on the success of the game watches and brought the spirit of Villanova basketball to life. Coogle touched on one of the effects he worked on, which happened to be one of his favorites.

“One effect I’m really proud of was triggered when Villanova went for free throws,” he said. “Each free throw, I made the lights go down and gave them a white sparkle similar to the hand motion fans do when waiting for the player to shoot. When the basket was made, the lights would shoot up, mimicking the ‘whoosh go.’”

The other integral part of these game watches, the video, was headed by Video Head Technician sophomore Tyler Brown. Brown spoke about his role and what it took to effectively produce the video screen for the fans attending the game watches.

“I was in charge of getting the feed of the game displayed on all the screens, from the big screens in the Villanova Room to the TVs outside the convenience store,” Brown said. “I also transitioned between the game and CAT’s displays.”

Moving forward, VUTC has some exciting events for the remaining part of the semester, the most notable being Commencement Week

“As the semester is winding down, our biggest event we’re looking forward to is Commencement Week,” sophomore Jacob Johnston said. “We’ll have various events going on around campus, the Blue and White Bash being the highlight. It’ll be followed by the commencement ceremonies themselves.”

In every event they produce, VUTC’s members love being a part of this organization. Members are able to bond over an appreciation of technical work and get to experience many Villanova events behind the scenes backstage.

“Since joining VUTC, I’ve been a spotlight operator during Hoops Mania, been able to see campus behind the scenes, learned how to use professional grade technical equipment and become a member of a tight-knit community,” sophomore Mitch Macek said. “Students that join can do all this and more, all while getting paid to do it.”

Another reason why so many VUTC members enjoy doing what they do is because of the financial benefits. VUTC is paid for its work, an added bonus of being part of this crew.

“My favorite part of being a VUTC member is getting that bread,” senior Kevin Sofronas said.

One member of VUTC has had a particularly unique experience. As a graduate student, Stephen Donchez has been a part of VUTC for all six years of his time at Villanova. Donchez explains how VUTC has enhanced his college experience.

“What started out as a part time job my freshman year has introduced me to some of my closest friends, exposed me to parts of the University that I otherwise never would have interacted with and most importantly gave me skills that I find myself applying in totally separate areas of my life,” Donchez said.

“VUTC has given me strong technical skills in a variety of related fields, but has also developed my soft skills, both in communication with people across the university and with regards to my leadership experience.”

So, the next time one attends an on-campus event, make sure to spot the students in black VUTC shirts, who work behind the scenes to provide the best experience possible for the Villanova community.