Elon University’s Project Pericles, in conjunction with a variety of campus and community organizations, is producing “Testing Positive,” a 30-minute film about the realities of being tested for HIV, the struggles young women have in relationships and physical and emotional abuse in romantic relationships. The film will premiere during a gala event in May 2006 at the Paramount Theatre in Burlington, N.C.
The film, based on a short story by Elon senior and Periclean Scholar Rebecca Doane, utilizes the talents of faculty and students from a variety of academic departments on the Elon campus. Performing arts students will serve as cast members and students in the School of Communications will work as directors and on the film support crew. Students will also gain real-world experience by meeting with members of the local business community to secure sponsorships for the premiere event in May. Filming will take place on the Elon campus and at various locations in the Elon and Burlington communities.
Net proceeds from the premiere event will benefit Alamance County agencies that deal with the issues portrayed in the film. Alamance Cares, CrossRoads Sexual Assault Response and Resource Center, and the Women’s Resource Center have been contacted.
Tom Arcaro, director of Project Pericles and professor of sociology, says the film will be available to schools, non-profits and other community organizations to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and abusive relationships. “This will be a high-quality film that will make a meaningful contribution in the effort to educate the general public about these issues. It also provides a remarkable opportunity for students, faculty and staff to partner with local businesses to benefit organizations that are making a difference in our community.”
Project Pericles at Elon University was initiated in 2002 when Elon became one of 10 universities to accept a challenge from the Eugene Lang Foundation to provide a learning experience that would “instill in students an abiding sense of social responsibility and civic concern.” The Periclean Scholars Program is the centerpiece of Project Pericles. Students chosen for this program take part in a series of courses, one per school year, culminating in a class project of global or local social change. The Class of 2006 chose the spread of HIV/AIDS, especially in Africa, as its project.