“With the presidential campaign in the forefront of people’s minds, we wanted to hear from students across the country about the issues that matter to them,” says Craig McAndrew, C-SPAN’s Manager of Education Relations.
And hear they did! Nearly 6,000 student filmmakers (in grades 6-8) took part in this year’s C-SPAN StudentCam documentary competition, creating 2,887 films based on the theme: “Road to the White House: What’s the issue YOU want candidates to discuss during the 2016 presidential election?”
As it turned out, the top three issues chosen by students this cycle had to do with the economy, equality, and education, and the films they created by which to express themselves were stellar even for this competition, which has been bringing out the best in student filmmakers since 2006. In all, 150 students and 53 teachers were awarded prizes. But it was 10th-grade student Olivia Hurd of Jenks, Oklahoma (below), who scored the year’s top spot with her thoroughly engaging documentary about the national debt, Up to Our Necks.
We congratulate Olivia, along with all of this year’s winning teachers and students!
Learn more about the competition and watch all the winning entries on the official StudentCam website.
—Stephen Vincent D’Emidio
Back-to-school season brings with it the arrival of C-SPAN’s annual StudentCam short documentary competition—a fabulous opportunity for any civic-minded student (grades 6-12) with a camera and a point of view to influence the national conversation and vie for cash prizes.
Participating schools and teacher advisers are eligible for cash prizes as well!
This year’s theme:
“Road to the White House”
What’s the issue YOU most want candidates to discuss during the 2016 presidential campaign?
The contest launches officially on September 9th, and students may begin uploading their documentaries on November 2nd. The final deadline for submissions is January 20th, 2016.
Pictured above (left to right) are Anna Gilligan, Michael Lozovoy and Katie Demos, 2015′s Grand Prize-winning team of 8th graders from Lexington, Kentucky.
Imagine your own students celebrating such an accomplishment!
But win or lose, participation in the contest is an exercise in intellectual growth. Just ask Clifton Raphael, a StudentCam Teacher Advisor at Oklahoma’s Jennks High School. “StudentCam forces my students to exercise a different set of creative muscles,” says Raphael, “and it’s work that helps them in their other classes as well, whenever they have to use critical thinking and organizational skills.”
For more information, visit C-SPAN’s StudentCam.
—Stephen Vincent D’Emidio
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