The School of Communications’ documentary program introduces its nine new members for the 2017-18 academic year.
elondocs, a documentary film production program housed in the School of Communications, welcomed its eighth cohort this fall, consisting of nine students with a variety of storytelling interests. The students, who range from first-year students to seniors, will create four short documentaries this year and participate in workshops throughout the fall. In spring 2018, they will also serve as student fellows at the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham.
The work has already started for faculty director Nicole Triche and these aspiring filmmakers, who spent the first month of the semester creating audio documentaries. The topics included mindfulness, high heels and a retired nun. They are now creating photography documentaries.
This is the eighth year for the documentary program, which has an office on the second floor of the McEwen Communications Building.
Joyce Choi is a junior from Boston, Massachusetts, who is back on campus after spending her spring 2017 semester in the Elon in LA program. The cinema and television arts major and leadership studies minor is passionate about storytelling and indie film production. When she’s not working with elondocs, she’s creating video content for Elonthon and the Global Education Center. She hopes to use the skills she learns through elondocs to become a better storyteller and producer.
Sydney Dye is a first-year student from Chapel Hill who is thrilled to be a member of elondocs. During high school Dye had the opportunity to create several documentary films that were screened on the national level. Her works were screened at the National History Day Contest, All American High School Film Festival and ALICE FEST. In May 2017, she graduated from Duke University’s Center for Documentary Studies with a certificate in documentary studies. Dye wants to continue to create documentaries to tell stories and bring about change in the world. She believes that documentaries can add a level of connectivity and empathy to complicated issues.
Emma Kopkowski was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia. She is a sophomore studying cinema and television arts with minors in Spanish and creative writing. The Communications Fellow is involved with Elon Student Television as well as Greek life. She hopes to use her experiences in elondocs to some day create documentaries that bring light to global social justice issues.
Tyler Litwin is a sophomore cinema and television arts major. He is also a member of Cinelon Productions and as well as Elon Student Television’s live comedy show, “Laugh Tracks.” One of his favorite documentaries is “Making a Murderer.”
Jared Mayerson is a sophomore Communications Fellow and studies cinema and television arts and photography. He is from San Mateo, California, and works as a videographer and video editor for Elon’s Office of University Communications. In addition, Mayerson has been active in student organizations such as Cinelon Productions, Elon Student Television and Elon News Network. He is excited to be a part of elondocs because he has a passion for documentary filmmaking and can’t wait to gain valuable experience this year.
Alexandra (Alex) Roat
Alex Roat is a sophomore Communications Fellow, majoring in journalism with a focus in broadcast news. She spends most of her time working with Elon News Network as a reporter, producer and director. She hopes that elondocs will not only improve her long-form storytelling skills, but also strengthen her production abilities. In the future, she hopes to share her passion for travel, culture and people through documentaries.
Jordan Shaw is a sophomore from Atlanta, Georgia, majoring in strategic communications with a minor in sociology. She is an active committee member on the Student Union Board and has been involved with various other organizations, including “Elon Tonight,” Elon News Network and FreshTV. She loves to travel, meet new people, and watch Netflix. Her love of Netflix originally drew her to watch “Living on One Dollar,” inspiring her to try documentary filmmaking. She hopes her passion for people and storytelling will make her work in elondocs successful.
Tyler Spaulding, a senior from Greenwich, Connecticut, is majoring in cinema and television arts with a double minor in digital art and computer science. After graduation, he hopes to move to New York to become a video producer.
Matthew Williamson, originally from Avon, Connecticut, is a broadcast journalism major with a minor in political science. The senior is involved in several campus activities and organizations, including the Global Ambassadors program, student media (“One on One Sports” and “Elon Phoenix Weekly”) and Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity. He is also a WSOE radio and podcast host, and captain of Elon’s club hockey team. Ezra Edelman’s “OJ Made in America” documentary produced by ESPN is one of his favorite documentaries. He hopes to become a broadcast journalist or reporter in the field of sports, covering and producing sports content. His dream job is to become a sports documentarian, focusing on international sports around the globe.