say they hope a summer program will awaken the cultural pride and
college aspirations of the county's American Indian students.
The six-week Young Native Scholars Summer
Program at UC San Diego will teach students basic film production,
Web page design, radio and television broadcasting and the history
of local Indian tribes, organizers said.
"In addition to encouraging students
to pursue their communication interests at the college level, (the
program) will prepare them to be part of a core multimedia team
that will be used later to establish cultural communication efforts
in their own areas in order to document current and past Native
American experiences," said Marc Chavez, the program's coordinator
The program is in its second year, but
it will be the first time San Diego's Media Arts Center will collaborate,
bringing its Teen Producer's Project to help students learn basic
"(Filmmaking) is an exciting hook
to get students interested in and use digital technology to get
involved in their community," said Ethan van Thillo, executive
director of the nonprofit Media Arts Center.
The Teen Producer's Project is an ongoing
program that has helped Latino students document life in the county's
Van Thillo said the Teen Producer's Project
will do the same for American Indian youths, giving them the skills
to document life on their often remote reservation communities by
creating short films and public service announcements.
Students participating in the UCSD program
will receive three units of college credit. In order to participate,
students must be of American Indian descent and have a 2.5 grade
point average or better, said Shonta Chaloux, site manager of the
Southern California Tribal Chairman's Youth Center located on the
San Pasqual Indian Reservation.
The Southern California Tribal Chairman's
Association, which represents most Southern California tribes, is
helping to fund and coordinate the program.
In classes beginning June 18, students
will receive 30 hours of training in film production, including
hands-on camera work, film editing, script writing and digital film
They will have nine hours of instruction
in radio and television broadcasting, music theory and on-air production.
And they will have nine hours of Southern California Indian history
The program also includes camping outings,
cultural site visits, field trips to university campuses and other
With their filmmaking skills, students
create film projects that students can use as content for Internet
or on-air programming, Chavez said. He said the students will also
help create cultural multimedia centers at local reservations to
link Indian communities via the Internet and airwaves.
Graduates of the program will also serve
as mentors for other Indian students and will have the opportunity
to be hired to film events sponsored by the chairman's association,
"There are a lot of objectives that
we see within ourselves," he said.
There will be 15 students accepted for
this year's program. The deadline to submit applications is June
3. For an application, call (760) 751-7676 or visit the website