Institute News

Announcing the Semifinalists of the 2017 IWitness Video Challenge

More students and teachers than ever before completed the IWitness Video Challenge this year. 

With four times the number of entries than it received just last year, the judges were faced with the tough work of narrowing down the videos to the top 20 semifinalists.  These video projects were created by middle and high school students from across nine different states.

Such topics as raising awareness and support for the deaf community, combatting stereotypes and bullying throughout their schools, and helping the homeless were just a few of the worthy ventures students took on this year. Inspired by the testimonies in IWitness, students spent time planning how they would create positive social change in their local communities.  Some students volunteered their time at local nonprofit organizations while others spearheaded initiatives throughout their schools and communities to create a more just and respectful world.  Many of the genocide survivor clips featured in the students’ projects highlighted how even small actions can have a big impact. 

The 2017 IWitness Video Challenge Semifinalists are:

Are You Listening? By Shayna Kantor, MA

Be the Change by Merci Bursell, Kelsey Hinson, Angelina Lappin, and Leann Mccall, NC

Beyond Stereotypes by Maya Montell, NJ

Giving Back by Benjamin Barabei, NC

H.O.P.E. - Helping Others Persevere Everything by Katie Ream and Taylor Sofoul, MA

IWitness Video Challenge ~ 2017 by Carson Hula, NY

IWitness Video Challenge ~ 2017 by William Humphreys, TN

Kiki and Camila's IWitness Project by Krithika Bhardwaj and Camila Escobar, FL

Knowledge Is Power by Jasmine Light, MA

Memories by Victor San Martin, FL

Mission Kidz4Life: Secret Agents for World Peace by Catherine Kiani, Andrea Chang, Erin Chang, and Ian Shang, CA

Nina and Benjy Make Bean Stew! By Nessa Kiani, CA

One Care Package at a Time by Kayla Holloway, Mayona Sanders & Madison Hayes, MI

Raising Awareness for Counseling by Violeta Gonzalez and Alexa Krochmal, FL

Roses for Change by Kayleigh Canavan, McKenna Nivens, Julia Fishbaugh, NC

Seeing Humanity in Everyone by Margaret Nyamadi, NC

Silence by Acadia Grantham, NC

The Butterfly Effect by Kira Helm, NC

The Friendship Circle by Sofi Baraybar, Melanie Garcia, Alexia Gomez, and Daniela Torres, FL

Who are You?: Embracing Identity in Our Community By Alana Chandler, Yu Jing Chen, and Natalia Wang, IL

The IWitness Video Challenge, which will award $10,000 in prizes overall, invites students each year from all over North America to be inspired by the voices in IWitness, to use their innovation to create positive value in their communities, and to submit short videos explaining the inspiration behind their extraordinary actions and impact. 

The submission period for the 2016-2017 contest is now closed and winners will be announced around June 5, 2017.