CCC takes part in Mannequin Challenge

By Brooke Finch
STAFF WRITER
bfinch@cnjonline.com

CLOVIS — The global phenomenon has reached celebrities, politicians, sports teams and more.

From Hillary Clinton to 4-year-olds, and even prison inmates and house pets, participants are countless. It’s the “Mannequin Challenge,” and Clovis Community College has joined the bandwagon.

A video of the college’s attempt was posted last Friday to the school’s YouTube channel and Facebook page.

Unlike the “Ice Bucket Challenge” that raised awareness for ALS two years ago, there’s no rhyme or reason for the Mannequin Challenge. But it has swept the nation all the same.

The concept is to stay completely still as though frozen in time, sometimes in an elaborately staged scene, while someone records a video. Oftentimes, music plays in the background — specifically, Rae Sremmurd’s “Black Beatles.”

The Mannequin Challenge started last month with high schoolers in Jacksonville, Florida, according to various reports, but the craze gained momentum in the last couple weeks.

CCC’s video featured about 20 participants from financial aid, admissions, academic advising and information technology departments, striking random poses in the main Student Services Office.

CCC marketing publications/website Coordinator Scott Knauer was behind the camera. He said one of the computer systems in the office was down for scheduled maintenance Friday, hence the spare time to gather everyone to make the video.

“We could’ve gotten pretty technical with it,” Knauer said, “but we tried to stay pretty simple. We just went for it. You sort of only have one shot for these kinds of things, and luckily, everybody held still and was pretty stationary.”

Alex Penland, a counselor and academic advisor, said the real challenge was keeping a straight face.

“I wouldn’t say it was hard to stay still,” Penland said. “It was harder not to laugh. Scott was trying to hurry up and get everybody in the video before they moved, but I think it turned out really good. Scott did a great job of capturing everyone, and it was a lot of fun.”

Knauer said with about 450 views in four days (465 as of Thursday), the video has become one of CCC’s more popular posts and helped bring attention to the college’s social media channels.

“With other trends and things like this, they usually serve a purpose,” Knauer said. “For this, I think it’s just kind of silliness for the sake of silliness, which is kind of welcomed these days with everything else going on in the world.”

Penland agrees, calling the Mannequin Challenge a much-needed distraction.

“With everything so serious now, it’s kind of fun to just not be serious,” Penland said. “It’s been something to get away from all the negativity you see on social media or the news nowadays. It’s good to be a little more lighthearted.”