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Sennheiser’s Mentorship Program In Full Swing With Help From HBO And Fox Sports

Students Brad Bacon and Eric Heikkila Take Classroom Knowledge into the Real World, As Sennheiser Helps Build a Bridge into Careers in Broadcast Audio

Sennheiser originally launched its Mentorship Program back in 2009 to help encourage the next generation of audio engineers to enter the exciting field of televised sports.

The company has since built collaborations among a variety of higher education institutions and top professional broadcast networks, such as HBO and Fox Sports.

For its most recent mentorship program, Sennheiser selected students Eric Heikkila from Emerson College, and Brad Bacon from the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences near Phoenix.

Heikkila shadowed A1 and A2 professionals during HBO Sports’ broadcast of a Light Heavyweight Title Bout between Chad Dawson and Adonis Stevenson while Bacon did the same during the NASCAR’s Coca-Cola 600 race by FOX Sports.

Randy Flick, senior audio mixer, HBO Boxing, took Heikkila under his wing during the nationally televised boxing match, which took place at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX on June 15th.

“Eric had a chance to go out into the field and work with different members of the audio staff,” says Flick. “He helped change out RF microphones on the trainers, and tailed the stage manager to see how she handles the event itself.”

The experience was rewarding for the Heikkila who gained unparallelled insight into a world-class broadcast audio operation.

“Until now, everything I had learned about audio was in a textbook,” Eric says. “Sennheiser’s Mentorship program put it all right in front of me in the real world. It is such an honor being selected to participate in this.” 

“We have been honored and extremely fortunate to continue our involvement in the Sennheiser Mentorship program,” commented Jason Cohen, director, sports production at HBO. “We have already had tremendous success stories since the inception of the program such as students becoming regulars on our technical crew.

“The immediate payoff of helping grow the industry and young mentors is just one of many reasons why we would like to remain part of this tremendous initiative.”

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