THHS students receive C-SPAN award

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On Tuesday May 8th, C-SPAN came to Townsend Harris to honor two groups of seniors who won Honorable Mention awards at the 2018 StudentCam history documentation competition. The theme this year was “The Constitution & You,” so participants had to select a provision of the U.S. Constitution and create a video illustrating why it was important to them. The two winning documentaries were “Im·mi·gra·tion” by Daniel Sotelo-Reiner, Annie Chu, and Joshua Viorgev, and “Triggered” by Julia Izak, Rachel Gaugler, and Aleksandra Hubczak.

“Im·mi·gra·tion” explores accusations of injustice regarding President Donald Trump’s views on immigration and focuses on changes to immigration policies under the Trump administration. “Triggered” provides an analysis of the second amendment and America’s gun laws. This documentary emphasizes the importance of gun law restrictions in the US.

“We hoped that if more people saw our video, we could make even a small difference. My group and I were so proud to be standing on stage and receive our certificates,” explained Julia Izak, one of the award winners.

Social Studies teacher Jaime Baranoff had her students enter the contest. She commented, “I think most of the students–not just those who won–did an excellent job capturing the theme. I’m very proud of all of my students’ work. The contest was an excellent way to bring together their experiences in the Election Simulation with the United States Government curriculum.”

Julia Izak continued, “I would recommend other students to participate in the competition because it allows you to further expand your passion for either filming or a social issue. I knew I was always against gun violence but I was never given an outlet to express myself on. C-SPAN allowed me to do that.”

Ms. Baranoff enthusiastically mentioned having students participate in the C-SPAN competition again next year, as she believes it was a valuable experience for her students, even if they didn’t win. “There were a number of very strong entries from THHS, from my classes as well as Ms. Levi’s. I’m very pleased that C-SPAN recognized two of THHS’s documentaries with Honorable Mention awards.”

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