Video cameras in a storage room with a Media, Communications, and Visual Arts banner on the wall

Student-Produced Documentaries

These award-winning films were produced as part of Pace University's Producing the Documentary course that works to prepare students for careers in media, journalism, communications, public relations, advertising, video production and film. Contact course lead Maria Luskay, EdD, at mluskay@pace.edu for any questions or media inquiries.

Bee Aware

Spring 2021 — After much hard work, dedication and anticipation, Bee Aware, is a film focusing on the environmental threats facing one of the most important pollinators for humankind. In spring 2020, the students really learned how to adapt to change and solve problems as the world around them changed. The film aptly debuted online on Earth Day as it spotlights the vital role bees play in our food supply; their importance to the environment; and some of the challenges facing the insect and the environment. Bee Aware was shot on location at bee farms throughout New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts.

Hawaii: Living on the Edge in Paradise?

Spring 2019 — During the summer of 2018, hundreds of earthquakes shook the summit of Kīlauea, sparking the volcano’s largest eruption in 200 years. To some it was a disaster. To others, it was the goddess Pele’s way of creating new ʻāina (land). The Hawaiian peoples’ resilience and cultural unity is a lesson in the true spirit of Aloha.

Puerto Rico: Hope in the Dark

Spring 2018 — Puerto Rico: Hope in the Dark is the story of the people of Puerto Rico and the faith, strength and hope that has sustained them in the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Maria. It is the most recent production of students in the Media, Communications and Visual Arts travel documentary course led by Maria Luskay, EdD.

Ridge to Ranch to River to Reef: Florida's Conservation Connections

Spring 2017 — From the scrubby forests and ranch lands in the interior of Florida, far from the tourist eyes, to the beaches and bays south of the Gulf Coast, we explore the way the Sunshine State balances the needs of its citizens and economy with those of its subtropical ecosystem and wildlife. Through research, conservation, and education, can Florida bear its population increase of 1000 people per day?

Cuba's Crossroads: Hope, Rock, and [R]Evolution

Spring 2016 — The film provides an intimate snapshot of Cubans’ lives and views at a remarkable juncture for this nation just 90 miles from Florida — between dictatorship and freedom, propaganda and the World Wide Web, suspicion and hope, making do and making a living.

Curaçao’s Coral Challenge: Reviving the Rain Forests of the Sea

Spring 2015 — This documentary centers on a society seeking to enhance its economy without diminishing its environmental assets. In Curaçao’s case, the challenge is finding ways to move beyond an economy based for nearly 100 years on refining Venezuelan oil to a more diverse one including substantial tourism — but doing so without harming the still-vibrant reefs ringing parts of its coast.

Green vs Gold

Spring 2014 — Will the tourism boom accompanying the back-to-back 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics be too much of a good thing for Brazil to bear? From an emerald tropical isle to an ancient port to the hillside favelas and spectacular stadiums of Rio, citizens and experts describe the environmental and social challenges and opportunities in balancing green and gold.

¡Viva la Tortuga!

Spring 2013 — Produced by a dozen students in Mexico, exploring and recording the evolving balance between local communities and the surrounding ecosystem. The team chronicles how communities that once depended on sea turtle poaching and other extractive activities depleting the region’s rich natural resources are now testing a new economic model – one built around conservation and sustainable tourism.

Battle Behind the Bottle

Spring 2012 — This film highlights the unseen issues within the cork industry in Portugal. The students wrote, filmed and produced the entire project, traveling to Porto, Coruche & Lisbon to research and film. The film makes the connection between cork harvested for wine bottles, a source of livelihood for 100,000 people, and the forests that are repositories for wildlife across Southern Europe and parts of North Africa.