Envisioning Our Future: The 2016 Summer Documentary Institute at AMI
Since 1988, the Appalachian Media Institute (AMI) has provided opportunities for young people from central Appalachia to explore their communities and develop their creative skills through the arts and media. Over the course of the summer youth explore the basics of video and audio production, view and discuss documentary media, and learn how to produce and distribute meaningful media about community issues and traditions.
2016 is a pivotal year for central Appalachia as we transition from the extraction of fossil fuels towards the building of a new regional economy. The 2016 Summer Documentary Institute will expand upon AMI’s tradition of innovative media training with Envisioning Our Future: an 8-week program that utilizes documentary storytelling as a means to explore, produce and share youth-led visions for central Appalachia’s future. Youth interns will experience a broad range of workshops on media production, including podcasting, media campaign strategy, digital filmmaking, photography and web-based storytelling taught by regional artists.
We are pleased to be partnering with Carnegie Museum of Art (CMOA) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to connect urban and rural Appalachian youth through workshops and peer-to-peer training opportunities. This exchange will enable Pittsburgh and Whitesburg youth to participate in the media education resources of AMI and the educational opportunities of CMOA. Through digital and in-person meetings, youth will share their skills, visions and experiences through a collaboration on a series of short media pieces.
Through the generous support of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, AMI youth interns will have the exciting opportunity to collaborate with acclaimed artists Elaine McMillion Sheldon and Kerrin Sheldon on the production of a media piece for publication in a national media outlet.
Since 1988, the Appalachian Media Institute has provided opportunities for young people from Central Appalachia to explore their communities and develop their creative skills through the arts and media.
This summer we will hold our 28th annual Summer Documentary Institute (SDI). Up to 6 applicants will be chosen from the region to work intensively with AMI and Appalshop staff. Over the course of the summer we will explore the basics of video and audio production, view and discuss documentary video, and learn how to produce and distribute meaningful media about community issues and traditions.
The documentary work produced during our summer institute has been seen by audiences from across the United States, and abroad. Some films have even been translated into other languages for international audiences, and many of these pieces have made a real difference in the dialogues and debates surrounding issues such as domestic violence, prejudice, drug abuse, and youth activism.
Working with AMI during the summer can be both a challenging and rewarding experience. It is important that you are interested in exploring your creativity through media making. You must 1) be a responsible AMI/Appalshop employee by upholding the policies and spirit of the program and organization and 2) be willing to learn from and share with others.
Since 1969, Appalshop has used media and the arts to work with communities to create positive social change; dispel cultural stereotypes; build opportunities for people to define their own history and culture; create a public space where people can come together to discuss their concerns; and find common ground and pursue solutions.
To learn more about AMI and Appalshop call Kate Fowler, at 606.633.0108.
AMI requirements are minimal. Simply, interns must be between ages 14 and 22 and capable of behaving, thriving, and interacting in a diverse and professional environment with a mature attitude. Prior experience with media is neither expected, nor required – only a creative mindset with a willingness to learn and do the work.
In addition to SDI being a paid internship, eligible interns who are at least a Junior in high school have the opportunity to earn THREE college credit hours in video production through Southeast Community and Technical Colleges (SCTC). This opportunity comes as an added benefit for participants of the program, at no cost to the individual.
The program will run for eight weeks total, beginning on June 3rd and ending on July 26th. During this time we will be meeting Monday through Friday, from 9:30am to 5:30pm, with an hour break each day for lunch. There will be two weekend trips to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania during the 8-week period. Occasionally, we will utilize days with team-building exercises devoted to activities or field trips. As with any other professional environment, evening work may be required to meet a production deadline. Because the Institute will demand your time and focus, other commitments during the week must be secondary to the program – including, but not limited to, other jobs, sports, classes, vacations, et cetera.
All interns will receive a bi-weekly stipend for their work at a rate of $320/week. This is taxable income. Interns are expected to arrive promptly each day prepared to work. Tardiness, absence, or lack of effort may result in suspension or proration of pay.
Transportation and Housing:
Transportation will be provided for those with need, typically by Appalshop staff, but occasionally from other interns or services such as LKLP. A liability release will be required of all accepted interns.
Interns living more than an hour away will be provided housing, with meals (excluding lunch) via the Appalshop Casa. An in-house supervisor will live on the property for the entirety of this program. As this location is also considered Appalshop property, all AMI/Appalshop policies will apply.
Because AMI serves as a positive model for young people in the community, interns will not be allowed to use tobacco products, consume alcohol, or take unauthorized drugs on the premises of Appalshop or while you are working as an intern in the community.
Appalshop and AMI do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, gender identity, sexual preference, or disability. Interns will be held to the same standard.
AMI interns are considered employees and representatives of Appalshop. Failure to adhere to AMI/Appalshop policies or expectations may result in suspension of pay or dismissal from the program.
If you have any questions or require further clarification, feel free to contact Kate Fowler via email ([email protected]) or phone (606.633.0108).