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FLEFF Intern Voices

The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view

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Posted by Kristina DiNardi at 10:58PM
Dr. Tanya Saunders

Blog posting written by Kris DiNardi, Writing for Film, Television and Emerging Media, ‘18, FLEFF Intern, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


This week, the FLEFF interns had the pleasure of meeting with Dr. Tanya Saunders, Assistant Provost of International Programs and Extended Studies, in order to gain insight towards the inner-workings of the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival.


Dr. Saunders explained to us how one of the biggest misconceptions about FLEFF is that it is just a film festival.


Looking from the surface level, FLEFF does contain the word “film” in its official title as the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival. In fact, FLEFF offers a wide-variety of film screenings throughout Ithaca College’s campus and in the theaters in Cinemapolis.


However, the word “film” overshadows what FLEFF actually does. FLEFF’s main goal, as stated by Dr. Saunders, is “to create an intellectual community engaged in dialogue.”


At Ithaca College, FLEFF is one of the few occasions where students, faculty and staff, from a variety of disciplines, can come together and engage in conversation. The wide-range in programming facilitates this intellectual community.


Other than attending the film screenings on campus and at Cinemapolis, Dr. Saunders recommends going to events such as the opening concert and multimedia presentation, readings and book presentations, and music and art installations. These events show how different media and mediums can be combined to produce great art.


In addition, Dr. Saunders heavily emphasized that students should take the opportunity to participate in FLEFF Lab — which is held from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on the Friday of the festival. FLEFF Lab is composed of workshops and presentations by visiting filmmakers, distributors, scholars, authors and artists that give students opportunities to learn from the professionals.


Closing off FLEFF Lab is the annual FLEFF How to Get Your Break Panel in which there is a moderated panel discussion composed of different industry professionals. Students who attend this event receive advice on who to get their big break into the film industry.


As our conversation with Dr. Saunders came to a close, we gained the insight about the history of FLEFF, FLEFF’s goals and programming, and how FLEFF impacts — not only us — but our festival goers, participants and everyone else who is involved with FLEFF in some capacity.


One of the most memorable quotes from Dr. Saunders was, “From Monday to Sunday, it’s FLEFF all-day, every day”


Are you excited for FLEFF?

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