A teenage boy sits in a chair for an interview in the PBS Wisconsin studio as a producer and operator stand behind the camera.

‘Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Youth Media’ projects to be showcased at Beloit International Film Festival

April 8, 2024 Tara Lovdahl Leave a Comment

The newest installment in PBS Wisconsin’s ongoing local history project, Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Beloit will premiere later in 2024 on PBS Wisconsin. While PBS Wisconsin’s production team was exploring the history of Beloit and creating this documentary, another perspective was taking shape.

Throughout the fall 2023 semester, PBS Wisconsin Education production and engagement staff worked alongside Beloit Memorial High School students in Latino studies classes and their teacher to explore history, storytelling, media literacy and video production through Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Youth Media. Students conducted historical research and learned basic production skills to create mini-documentaries.

Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Youth Media documentaries will be shown at the Beloit International Film Festival at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 10. The Beloit Memorial High School students’ films will be shown alongside the festival’s own Student Showcase.

With guidance from their teacher and PBS Wisconsin Education, students chose local history topics they found personally interesting and significant.

The project aims to amplify young people’s voices through historical inquiry and offers a platform to connect their findings to current issues. This complement to the Wisconsin Hometown Stories documentary series is meant to extend community engagement to younger generations through historical research in their community.

Nick Ostrem, an education engagement specialist on the PBS Wisconsin Education team, reflects on working with the students for Wisconsin Hometown Stories: Youth Media. “It was inspiring to see the students put so much work into their projects!” he said. “They found topics that were important to them and connected Beloit to the larger Latino story.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *