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ACM Student Film Conference & Festival

Showcasing Student Filmmakers, Screenwriters, and Scholars

The biennial ACM Student Film Conference & Festival showcases the best creative and academic work submitted by student filmmakers, screenwriters, and scholars from ACM colleges, and provides a forum for students to exchange perspectives and learn from distinguished film industry and media artists and professionals.


2018 ACM Student Film Conference & Festival

April 20-22, 2018 at Lawrence University, Appleton, WI

 

2016 ACM Student Film Conference & Festival

April 1-3, 2016 at Lawrence University, Appleton, WI


The inaugural ACM Student Film Conference & Festival in 2016 received funding support from an ACM Faculty Career Enhancement (FaCE) Program grant, which was awarded to professors Amy Ongiri (film studies, Lawrence University), Theresa Geller (English, Grinnell College), and John Kaufman (theater, Beloit College).

Scroll down for an overview and discussion of the goals of the project, which is adapted from the FaCE grant proposal submitted by professors Ongiri, Geller, and Kaufman.

For more information, see the ACM Student Film Conference & Festival website hosted by Lawrence University.

Overview

Note: Content below has been adapated from the FaCE grant proposal for this project.

Film studies is a relatively new, technology-enabled discipline that has grown exponentially as a field among the ACM campuses. Pervasive use of visual technology and media makes visual literacy a compelling, if not critical, educational initiative. The liberal arts can demonstrate enhanced continuing relevance and find fresh expression and application through film studies. It also frequently fosters interdisciplinarity and supports other campus activities. Film studies has, however, seen uneven development across the ACM, with not all the campuses having equal access to new technological and intellectual resources.

A cross-campus team of film faculty organized the inaugural ACM Student Film Conference & Festival held at Lawrence University on April 1-3, 2016. The main goal of this project is to create a collaborative atmosphere for film studies across the ACM campuses that will enable larger discussions of curriculum development, research opportunities, and the possibility for future collaborations. Further, this project aims to offer students a rare regional educational opportunity and strengthen film studies programs across the ACM, no matter their stage of development.

The ACM Student Film Conference and Festival is an opportunity for the ACM consortium faculty to show leadership and outstanding undergraduate education in a technology-rich field. Looking ahead, the organizers anticipate that all ACM film programs will benefit from the additional attention the event will draw to the role that liberal arts colleges can play in the propagation of film studies. It will heighten the programs' attraction for prospective students and raise the awareness of industry professionals. Moreover, it will contribute to the outstanding undergraduate experience of students at ACM colleges.


Goals

Updated May 11, 2018

Note: Content below has been adapated from the FaCE grant proposal for this project.

  • Promote cross-campus collaboration and sharing of resources among faculty and students
  • Enhance student learning in Film Studies
  • Strengthen Film Studies programs on ACM campuses

Film Studies is a relatively new discipline that has grown exponentially as a field among the ACM campuses. Pervasive use of visual technology and media makes visual literacy a compelling, if not critical educational initiative. Film Studies also enhances the liberal arts' continuing relevance and gives it fresh expression and application. It frequently fosters interdisciplinarity and supports other campus activities. Film studies has, however, seen uneven development across the ACM, with not all the campuses having equal access to new technological and intellectual resources. Some schools have full-scale programs with majors and minors, while others are limited to areas of concentrated study within other disciplines such as English.

The ACM Conference and Festival will allow campuses with smaller programs to collaborate with larger, more resourced programs, in order to take advantage of equipment, curricular, and faculty assets. Networking and sharing should help faculty enrich their programs and student experience. This project provides a collaborative opportunity for ACM faculty to show leadership and outstanding undergraduate education in this technology-rich field.

Also, the ACM is fairly spread out, geographically. The Conference and Festival would be another opportunity to get ACM people interested in film all together in one place. In bridging the geography of the ACM, it facilitates conversation and collaboration that can resonate into the future. As a result of this project, we anticipate that faculty will return to home institutions better equipped to develop their film programs. The Conference and Festival also bridges the geography of film, bringing it from the Coasts to the Midwest, where it is more easily accessed by our consortium of schools. Sharing the Conference and Festival provides a rare regional opportunity for all ACM film faculty and students.

The increase in collaboration across ACM Film Studies programs and campuses will help to create a strong intercampus culture. We anticipate that all ACM film programs will benefit from the additional attention it will draw to the role that liberal arts schools can play in the propagation of Film Studies. We expect it will heighten our programs' attraction for prospective students and raise the awareness of industry professionals. Moreover, it will contribute to the outstanding undergraduate experience of our current students.

The ACM Film Conference and Festival is an opportunity for the ACM consortium faculty to show leadership and outstanding undergraduate education in a technology-rich field. Film Studies as a discipline is dependent on technology that very rapidly innovates. In the last 20 years alone, the technology for recording and disseminating visual culture has undergone complete transformation. Even if a Film Studies program is not engaged directly in film production, it takes a certain amount of facility with technology to understand film as an art. The Conference and Festival Conference presents an opportunity for our liberal arts schools to excel in technology-enabled education.

It also presents an innovative way to address the needs of our ACM film programs at different stages of development. As the Conference and Festival evolves, we expect it will be a catalyst for faculty collaboration and program development at all levels. Faculty from established programs can offer their students this excellent educational opportunity and network with industry professionals to cultivate program speakers and mentors or possibly internship opportunities. Their programs stand to gain from the additional exposure to filmmaking in the Midwest.

Faculty in developing programs can network and pool resources to boost their curriculum and programs and to connect students to a richer opportunity than they could offer alone. Rare time spent with other faculty interested in film may spark future research projects. We anticipate that no matter where each program is at in the continuum, the Conference and Festival will create a collaborative atmosphere in which a shared sense of purpose across the ACM will become the norm among faculty and students.

In the future, the ACM Film Conference and Festival could potentially rotate among colleges, spreading the word and deepening the connections among faculty.


Lead Partner
Amy Ongiri
Associate Professor, Lawrence University
Film Studies
amy.a.ongiri@lawrence.edu
Collaborating partner(s)
Theresa Geller
Associate Professor, Grinnell College
English
John Kaufman
Assistant Professor, Beloit College
Theater
kaufmannj@beloit.edu
ACM Program Funding
FaCE
Award
$38,685
Funding Cycle
2014-2015
Project Duration
Keywords
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