UTSA film studies program debuts showcasing rising student filmmakers

Students and faculty are excited to showcase new media courses’ projects

Kaitlyn Rosas, Multimedia Editor

The UTSA film studies program makes its public debut this week with a star-studded student film festival. After the inclusion of brand-new, film-focused courses, a semester’s worth of student films will be screened this Wednesday evening.

New Media Professor Sarah Lasley shares that the student festival will “inaugurate the collaboration” of the forthcoming Southwest School of Art and College of Liberal and Fine Arts collaboration. Lasley shares the festival will showcase student work from the New Media: Advance Class and 3D New Media Class.

“New Media students make solo projects (without a cast or crew), which differs from the Film Studies approach, and the work is often geared toward subjective exploration over linear narratives,” Lasley said. 

These animated projects vary from the full-crew, production-heavy short films that will be screened from the newly introduced film production course taught this semester by San Antonio Film Festival Founder, Adam Rocha. 

“It is my honor to teach this class which I’m so excited about. The students are having a fun time making movies too! Cinema is my passion and I’m absolutely enjoying teaching production this semester,” Rocha said.

Student filmmaker Jake Rosas shares how his film, “Place In-Between,” holds a special connection to his home life growing up. Rosas shared his appreciation for the course by saying, “this class allowed me to tell a story and pay homage to my family business.” With the inclusion of these new courses, this is only the first of many personal, home-grown stories to be shared as a product of the new film and media studies program. 

Professor Paul Ardoin, program director of UTSA film and media studies, shared that the program will offer many classes for students.

“UTSA Film Studies has a film studies minor and launches its new Film/Media major in the fall. Students take courses in film history, theory, criticism, and production, working alongside faculty scholars, curators, and filmmakers,” Ardoin said. 

For the first time in program history, students will be moving from behind the desk and chalkboards, to behind the camera monitor to express their creative visions in the program’s very own studio spaces. 

“Our newnine-room Film Production Hub opens this year, with two shooting spaces, along with spaces for post-production sound, editing, color correction, screenwriting, film screening, and socializing,” Ardoin said. 

For years, the city of San Antonio has grown into a rising and thriving film center, making it no surprise that UTSA will be introducing a brand-new film major to the university’s catalog. With the implementation of challenging film theory classes, thought-provoking screenwriting lectures and hands-on production courses; UTSA will become an institution mentioned proudly within the Texas film community. 

“The faculty and staff are very supportive and encouraging,” Rocha said. “So I have no doubt the film school here will be a top school from across the nation.”

Be sure to support your local student filmmakers’ projects this Wednesday, April 27 at 6 p.m. in the Harris Room (HSU 2.212) located in the H-E-B Student Union. Attendees may also RSVP for the event on RowdyLink.