It’s a hat trick for Dean students: this season, Sports Broadcasting majors Austin DeCouta ’23, Brett Chaves ’24 and George Hathaway ’23 have landed play-by-play broadcasting jobs for the Providence Bruins, the AHL affiliate of the Boston Bruins.
On select Fridays during home games, Austin, George and Brett will share broadcast duties and rotate two at a time throughout the season. They’ll also be handling PA announcer duties for the junior exhibition games prior to game time. This opportunity was made possible through Dean’s partnership with the Providence Bruins and the skills each student exhibits as a broadcaster.
Brett and George were on the call for the first home game of the season and were thrilled with the experience.
“The first game could not have gone any better,” said Brett. “It was surreal to be broadcasting the game in front of thousands of fans inside the arena. There is also a nostalgia behind all of this, as I grew up going to Providence Bruins games as a fan. My favorite part was definitely calling the first goal of the season, and the goal horn blaring as I finished the call. Goosebumps all over."
George agreed: “The Bruins won, so it felt good to broadcast the season opener,” he said. “The coolest thing I did for the Providence Bruins, besides broadcasting the game and analyzing AHL hockey for thousands of people, was being the Public Address Announcer for youth hockey prior to the game. It was cool to hear my voice throughout the Amica Mutual Pavilion.”
With a few years at Dean and quite a few internships under their belts, all three students credit Dean’s academic programs and real-world opportunities with helping them grow their skills as broadcasters. From calling games on campus to a variety of summer internships with collegiate baseball leagues to covering the Big East Tournament, Brett, George and Austin have all put in the work and the reps to improve their play-by-play and learn how to be versatile as broadcasters. It’s an education that starts from day one here at Dean.
“I remember my first broadcast at Dean,” said George. “It was a women’s volleyball match and I had little to no experience broadcasting before. Now in my senior year, I have grown through repetition to now broadcast for the Providence Bruins – a job that will prepare me for my career by being able to know what it is like in the real world.”
They also credit the mentorship and support from the faculty at Dean, especially John Rooke, Director of the Center for Business, Entertainment and Sport Management and Distinguished Executive Faculty.
“Professor Rooke and the entire broadcasting and communications department have prepared me by providing knowledge and skills to refine my communication and broadcast skills,” Austin explained.
Austin and Brett were on the call for the second Friday night game, and both are grateful for the experience they’re gaining as they prepare for the real world. “This allows me to work in a high quality and professional production to prepare for the world after college,” said Austin. And it also stands out on their resumes. “This is professional hockey at the minor-league level,” said Brett. “Being able to call hockey at this kind of level is going to put me in a position above any other person competing for a job. It’s not often a college student gets to say they called AHL hockey.”
With the first two games complete, Austin, Brett and George have an exciting season ahead of them. They’ll continue to learn and hone their skills on Friday nights – and are already implementing what they’ve learned to improve their broadcasts. “Broadcasting for a very good team in an organization built off success has taught me to know the history of the organization and to bring that knowledge to the broadcast,” explained George.
And of course, they plan to soak up every moment of this entire experience. “I think the part I’m looking forward to the most is getting to observe and feel the sights and sounds,” Brett said. “Listening to the goal horn, the boards clashing, the fans cheering. All of these observations combined make up one of the coolest atmospheres in sports.”
Tune into AHL TV during Friday night home games to hear Austin, Brett and George live on air – and cheer them on along with the P-Bruins!