FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, November 11, 2012
Haydenfilms Institute (HFI) has the distinct privilege of presenting its Youth Media Initiative (YMI) program at a PSA Festival Showcase to be held at Kutztown University on Wednesday, December 11th. The event will honor Berks County youth by showcasing 20 public service announcements (PSAs) produced by YMI participants in an effort to reduce youth violence.
The program began in October 2012, when ten local organizations pitched their causes to the YMI participants to show how they support the community. They were also given a PSA that was later created entirely by the students. All of the PSAs competed in an online film festival that took place on www.haydenfilmsinstitute.org and ran from May 22nd to July 21st. Viewers from around the globe were able to vote for their favorite PSAs.
The night will be a celebration of Berks County youth’s accomplishments, the Greater Reading Community and Kutztown University. "We are very impressed with the work of all of the young women and men involved in the Youth Media Initiative. We hope that they have had a valuable experience that has given them some insight into possible vocations for their future," states F. Javier Cevallos, President of Kutztown University. The evening will also include the presentation of a $10,000 scholarship to the creators of the top three PSAs.
The showcase will be presented by Advantage Point Student Apartments, the new apartment complex coming to Kutztown, Pa. located beside Kutztown University’s Golden Bear Village South. Owner of Advantage Point Apartments, Gregory Sarangoulis, states, “We are extremely excited about partnering with Haydenfilms Institute and the Kutztown community in the PSA Festival Showcase. HFI has great relations with Kutztown University as Hayden is an alum and Advantage Point Apartments are creating a secure and healthy lifestyle for the university students with the best location and amenities available.”
The event will take place at Kutztown University’s McFarland Student Union Building in the Alumni Auditorium from 6 to 8 p.m. Admission will be free to the general public, however, donations to support the YMI program will be encouraged at the door. All Kutztown University students are encouraged to attend. Expected in attendance will be Kutztown alumni and award-winning director, Michael Attardi, Senator Judith L. Schwank (D-11th), Reading Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer, and Chief of Police William M. Heim. Also in attendance will be Haydenfilms 4.0 Online Film Festival Winner, Johnny Ray Gill, who also served as Executive Producer during the YMI. Gill, an actor and filmmaker based in Los Angeles, is best known for roles on NBC's "Harry's Law", HBO's "True Blood”, and currently plays Kerwin Whittman in the new television series “Rectify” on the Sundance Channel.
HFI’s mission is to empower, educate and fund global, independent, and student filmmakers. Michael Attardi states, “The Haydenfilms Institute is an innovative and creative platform for aspiring young filmmakers. The institute's mission has surpassed all of our expectations." The hopes of the PSA Festival Showcase are to bring together the students involved, their parents and the surrounding areas of the Lehigh Valley and Berks County with an aspiration to gain support and expand the YMI in the future.