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  • Writer's pictureTye Ojala

Student Spotlight: Jacob Schemmel

Updated: May 5

Jacob Schemmel is a Junior at Clarke where he majors in Communications. He is originally from Dubuque, Iowa. He is also a part of the Esports team where he plays in various Fortnite competitions throughout the school year.



I had the pleasure to sit down with Jacob. The following is the conversation between him and I.



What is your favorite memory at Clarke? 


My favorite memory at Clarke University so far is probably being able to be creative and create videos in Chrissy Bartels classes. She let me create different things and by me doing something different, she saw something in me, and since then, I have had amazing opportunities. 


Why did you choose Clarke University? 


I chose Clarke University because it just felt like home. How warm and kind the people were really made me realize that the people who work here truly care about the students. 


What inspired you to pursue your current field of study? 


I decided to pursue Communications because I realized that this field has a lot of opportunities that I am interested in for my future. Chrissy kind of made me realize that this degree has a lot of opportunities with film, content, and creativity.  


What do you want to do after you complete your degree here? 


Of course, continue with my YouTube career, and try and pursue a career in the film industry, whether that’sdirecting, acting, or editing.  


What’s your favorite part about the esports team? 


Honestly my teammates, I have met a lot of friends because of Esports, and if I never joined, I would not have made the friends I have today.  


When did you know you had a special talent with editing and making videos? 


I have always been a creative person. Whether that was coming up with stories, and playing with LEGO or stuffed animals when I was a kid. When I was a kid, I even pretended to have a YouTube channel, and have fans that watched my videos. I know its corny to talk about with this question, but I truly believe that is why my creativity has stuck with me through the years. I remember one of my 6th grade teachers told me something that has stuck with me for years. I remember for an assignment, I created a story, and after I presented it, she told me to hold onto that creativity.  Moving on, it took a lot of practice with making videos and editing. The more I practiced and got inspired by my favorite YouTubers, the more I realized that I liked editing and creating stories and content. 2020, being stuck in the house really made me be more creative, whether that was creating TikToks and editing, or restarting my YouTube channel, it helped me get to where I am today.  Overall, I just love making videos, coming up with stories, and would love to do this in the future! 



 How did you being on the esports team come along? With recruiting and everything? 


In the summer right before my freshman year, Josh Moris told me about an Esports team that was being created. Eventually I met with Henry Johnston, and he told me about Esports and what it would be like. I told him I would do some thinking, and after like 5 minutes, my mom and I were talking, and I decided to just do it! I was the first person to sign and have a scholarship for Esports, so I have been with it since the beginning, and have seen how much its evolved and grown! 



Can you discuss any research projects or internships you've been involved in? 


Of course, The History of Broadcasting Documentary that we worked on in one of my COMM classes, I had an Esports Internship, where I filmed, interviewed, edited and worked with cameras to make videos to promote the Esports team. This semester, I have had the opportunity to work with the Julien Dubuque Film Festival and has been great so far! I am editing 100+ interviews of film creators who submitted their films into the festival, so I have been busy with that, but it is going wonderfully well! 


How do you balance your academic responsibilities with other commitments? 


                  I just try and take one step at a time. I usually just try and make a schedule for myself, to spread out my schoolwork and classes, with Esports, with JDIFF, and once I get into the swing of things, it usually goes well! 


Are there any professors or mentors who have had a significant impact on your academic or personal development?


·       Christopher Burke, Joshua Moris, and Chrissy Bartels. These three people have helped me so much, not just as teachers and professors, but they have all helped me grow and become a better person. 


·       Mr. Burke, who was my Cross Country coach and Pre Algebra teacher in 8th grade. He helped me so much, and seeing how kind and respectful he is, helped me want to be like him and strive for success! 


·       Josh has been with me since the beginning of my college career. He helped with picking classes, having meetings to help me with my future, and is just a funny great guy. If it was not for Josh, I probably would not be where I am today educationally. 


·       Finally, Chrissy, who has been my mentor the past year. She has helped me so much, whether that was getting an internship with JDIFF, or letting me create and be creative in class, she helped me so much and I seriously would not be where I am if she did not come to Clarke.  




What advice would you give to other students who are interested in following a similar path in regard to film? 


If you have dream or goal in life, GO FOR IT! I see so many people give up on their dreams and settle. I want more people to strive for success, so if you are interested in film or anything, try your best, and believe to achieve your dreams! 



Finally, can you share a memorable experience or lesson you've learned during your time as a student? 


I feel like I've talked about experiences a lot, so I will share a lesson. That is to not get so stressed, and just enjoy the moment. I am a junior at Clarke, and it feels as if just yesterday I was a freshman, it goes WAY too fast, and so just enjoy the moment, because one day, you will look back and miss where you are now! 


What hopes do you have for the film festival that is upcoming? 


Hopefully I get new opportunities, and just have a lot of fun, but if nothing happens, just the experience will be great! 



Jacob and his Fortnite crew have just finished up their successful season, we congratulate them on the awards and accomplishments they were able to achieve this year. On April 24-28th Jacob will be at the Dubuque Film Festival. We would love to see as many members of the Clarke community as possible cheering on Jacob and the film he helped create.

Tye Ojala

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