Fifth Annual HWS Oscars Party – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Fifth Annual HWS Oscars Party

As “12 Years a Slave” took away the Oscar for Best Picture during the 86th Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre, Hobart and William Smith Colleges continued its own Oscars event for the fifth consecutive year in the Vandervort Room, where students witnessed the live event in a fashionable manor.

Students made a grand entrance on the red carpet, and had their picture taken with a novel trophy to start the festivities. Inside were multiple tables to accommodate the viewers, along with candy and refreshments.

Assistant Professor of Media and Society Leah Shafer, who coordinated the Oscar party, says, “The big screens are great and the round tables allow people to converse during the party.”

There was also a ballot contest, and as students walked in they could write down their predictions for the winners in each of the different categories.
Devyn LaCamera ’14 predicted 16 out of the 24 awards, which was the highest score in the ballot contest, and won a $20 gift card to Wegmans and a novel trophy.

LaCamera, a media and society major with a minor in history, was just as surprised to learn of her impressive feat. She says, “There are a lot of very ‘movie savvy’ students in the media and society department, so I am shocked I was the one to win!”

She was able to see many of the films that were nominated this year, including “American Hustle,” “Gravity,” “Captain Philips,” “Wolf of Wall Street,” “Frozen,” “The Great Gatsby” and “The Lady in Number 6.”

“I am dying to see the films that I have not had a chance to view yet!” she says.

Along with the prizes from the ballot contest were the prizes from HWS’ ABC Representative Blair Dector ’14. Since ABC is an affiliate of the Oscars, Dector had prizes for students. In a simple challenge, a “Revenge” season DVD was given out, along with cups from ABC’s new series, “Mixology.”

“This event brings media and society students and other students together through the love of film and Academy Awards,” Shafer says. “I love seeing students dressed up and socializing with each other and having conversations about media outside of the classroom.”

Shafer also mentions, “HWS alums tweet that they wish they were back at the Colleges for academy awards night.”

One alum had more of an opportunity to be involved with the Oscars than most; Josh Horowitz ’98 co-hosted MTV’s live coverage of the Oscar’s at Sunday night’s event. It was the seventh time in a row that Horowitz covered the Academy Awards for MTV, where he works as a news correspondent.

“I’m often asked what it’s like to cover such an iconic event and I always say it’s about what you’d expect,” Horowitz explains. “Exciting, bizarre, absurd; stepping on that red carpet and talking to your cinematic heroes is like a waking dream. You just want to soak up as much of it as possible.”

Horowitz, who joined MTV in 2006 and covers the movie industry for the network, says having the opportunity to report on the event has been a “pleasure and quite surreal honor.” Crediting the Colleges for his track toward broadcasting, Horowitz says he’s been hooked ever since he picked up a microphone at WEOS-FM.

As the Oscars wrapped up, so did the event here on campus late Sunday night. Shafer is eagerly planning next year’s event, and once again, the HWS Oscars was a hit and provided students with an amazing and unique experience.