Documentary Studies and Production combines cinema production, journalism, television production, and photography courses so you'll develop the variety of skills needed to tell important documentary stories. Below is a compilation of a few of our students’ recent award winning work:
Storytelling to Inform, Inspire, and Incite
We think we have one of the best programs of its kind in the nation. It’s no accident that our student films achieve impressive media distribution and regularly appear in festivals and contests around the world. In both 2020 and 2019, our students were finalists in the prestigious national College Emmy Awards. One Nation Under Guns was a 2020 finalist. Below is the trailer:
Create films that can change the world for the better and start DAY ONE.
In your very first semester, you will commonly take Cinema Production 1, Introduction to Journalism, Documentary Immersion and S’Park!: Igniting Your Future in Communications. In these courses you will get a chance to make work right away and to expand your understanding of this complex field.
Ithaca College was all over Park City, Utah, for the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. Maya Cueva '15 was at the festival as a Sundance Ignite fellow to learn from the filmmakers screening their latest projects. Among those filmmakers was Crystal Kayiza '15, who screened her latest documentary, and 11 current Park School students worked as festival volunteers.
Fusion of Theory and Practice
Some programs emphasize theory. Others focus on production. The Documentary Studies and Production degree is a creative synthesis of both.
In your very first semester, you will take 12 communications credits in the Park School so that you are fully immersed in your major. Courses include Introduction to Film Aesthetics and Analysis, Cinema Production 1, Introduction to Journalism, and S’Park!: Igniting Your Future in Communications.
Our faculty includes authoritative scholars and award-winning documentary makers with extensive experience in the field. Your training will enable you to develop practical skills, and you can take advantage of opportunities within the Park School to build your resume and portfolio with documentary films, trailers, and impressive proposal books.
Professor Patricia Zimmermann co-curated a national traveling exhibit of 41 short documentaries produced by 36 community entities by over 90 makers called, “We Tell: Fifty Years of Participatory Community Media.”
Where Are Our Alumni?
Our students are well-prepared to assume roles in news organizations, production houses, and to function as independent documentarians. Many of them secure prestigious grants and fellowships; for example, we have had three recent graduates accepted into the very selective Sundance Ingite Fellowship program.
Check out our alumni page to see what you can do with this degree.
Alumna Crystal Kayiza '15 went from making documentaries in high school to having her film See You Next Time become an official selection of the 2020 Sundance Film Festival and being named one of 25 new faces in independent film in 2018.
Documentary Studies Program Contact Information
Questions about the Documentary Studies program? Please contact
John Scott, Program Director
Associate Professor, Media Arts, Sciences and Studies