"PLU students, alumni collectively earn four Emmy nominations for work in student media" – PLU News

TACOMA, WASH. (May 8, 2018) — Three Pacific Lutheran University student-media organizations have received a total of four Emmy Award nominations from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences — Northwest Chapter.

MediaLab — which was nominated twice for its four-part documentary series “A World of Difference” — is no stranger to Emmy nominations, but this year marks the first time other student-led groups within the School of Arts and Communication joined the ranks.

“This year demonstrates that the standards, the expectations, and the levels of achievement across the board at PLU are on the rise, and that’s exciting,” said Robert Wells, director of the Center for Media Studies, another organization recognized for documentary filmmaking. Two former students within the center — Cara Gillespie ’17 and Elise Anderson ’17 — were nominated in the long-form, non-fiction category for their production titled “More Than a Mission: Stemming the Sex Trade in Angeles City,” which investigates the plight of young women trapped in the world of human trafficking in the Philippines.

PLU’s popular late-night entertainment show, “Late Knight,” earned the fourth Emmy nod for a short-form fiction feature titled “Twas The Late Knight Before Christmas.”

“A World of Difference,” which premiered two episodes in Seattle earlier this year, explores the shifting cultural landscapes of race, class, immigration status and gender across North America. It earned both nominations in the long-form, non-fiction documentary category.

“We worked hard to create films that inspire thoughtful and necessary conversations regarding the difficult topics of race, gender, immigration and class,” said Mackenzie Cooper ’18, a two-year member of the organization and a producer on the MediaLab documentary series. “This recognition affirms the success of stories and our ability to tell them.”

In addition to Cooper, the production team for “A World of Difference” included: Joshua Wiersma ’18, director of photography and editor; Julia Grosvenor ’19, story editor; and Rachel Lovrovich ’18, director and designer; Dalton Rouse ’18 composed the original soundtrack and Jonathan Spielmann ’18 narrated. [READ MORE]

"PLU MediaLab tackles diversity in new documentary series" - Tacoma Weekly


"MediaLab, the award-winning applied research program at Pacific Lutheran University (PLU), will premiere two episodes on Thursday, April 5 from “A World of Difference,” the organization’s new, multi-part documentary series.

“A World of Difference” explores issues of diversity, including gender, race, immigration and social class. The episodes debuting on April 5 will focus on race and class, and will screen at 7 p.m. in Ingram Hall, Room 100, 12180 Park Ave.


The Tacoma premiere of “A World of Difference” is free and open to the public. Attendees are encouraged, however, to RSVP at worldofdifferenceseries.com/rsvp to ensure adequate seating.

A question and answer session featuring the filmmakers, as well as audience discussion, will immediately follow the screening. Refreshments will be served during a reception at the end of the event.

Visit worldofdifferenceseries.com for more information about the documentary series, or to see a trailer."

Helen E. Smith is a Tacoma-based freelance writer and a member of MediaLab (https://medialab.plu.edu) at Pacific Lutheran University. She can be reached at (smithhe@plu.edu).

"MediaLab explores issues of diversity with premiere of documentary series, ‘A World of Difference’" - PLU News

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TACOMA, WASH. (Jan. 29, 2018) — Two episodes of a new four-part MediaLab documentary project are set to premiere next month in Seattle.

The series, titled “A World of Difference,” explores issues of diversity, including gender, race, immigration and social class.

The first two segments, about immigration and gender, will screen at 4 p.m. on Feb. 17 at the Seattle Central Public Library, 1000 Fourth Ave. in Seattle.

The other two portions of the series will premiere in Tacoma later this spring.

“A World of Difference” was jointly sponsored and supported by PLU’s School of Arts and Communication, the Wang Center for Global Education and the university’s Diversity, Justice and Sustainability (DJS) fund.

Over the past 10 months, the series was produced by a documentary team of four MediaLab students: project director and graphic designer Rachel Lovrovich ’18, a digital media major; director of photography and editor Joshua Wiersma ’18, a communication major; chief writer Julia Grosvenor ’19, a communication major; and producer Mackenzie R. Cooper ’19, a communication major.

The team traveled to four locations nationwide to investigate how different communities approach issues of diversity. One such location was El Paso, Texas, a Southwestern border city that is part of a metropolitan area of nearly 2 million people, which includes Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

Wiersma said he found the circumstances in El Paso to be much different than he originally expected. [READ MORE]

“Sedalia first stop in documentary about diversity across the U.S.” - SEDALIA DEMOCRAT

MediaLab’s documentary team starred in a featured story in the Sedalia Democrat on Tuesday, May 30, 2017. 

While conducting an interview with pastor Calvin Pritchard, the A World of Difference team was surprised when a newspaper photographer walked in. They picked up a copy of the daily paper the next morning, finding themselves featured on the first page.