Hanyang English Film Festival (HEFF) ProjectsInnovating, organizing, collaborating, and leading by example
Chair, Organizing Committee; Technologist / Web Designer; Emcee
HEFF Project A: Engaging Students and Faculty in Major Event
(Chair, Organizing Committee: May 2015 to Present)
Project A Data
- Current role: committee chair
- Number of committee members: 7
- Number of emcees, judges, and other faculty volunteers: 12
- Total number of faculty members in department: 27
- Number of films screened at the Red Carpet event: 14
- Number of participating students: 59
- Number of registered undergraduate students: 24,544
- Percentage of students with English as L1: 0.5%
Note: The festival is limited to undergraduate students only and their films must be in English.
I have served as Committee Chair for the annual Hanyang English Film Festival since May, 2015. The festival began in 2013 and, because it was a huge success in that first year, it was soon allocated a healthy amount of funding. This enabled the organizing committee to offer substantial incentives for both students and staff to get involved in the 2014 and 2015 festivals. However, shortly before commencing my term as Committee Chair for the 2016 iteration of the event, a major source of funding was unexpectedly withdrawn and the amount of available prize money was reduced to less than half of what it had been in previous years. With such a decrease in monetary incentives, it was necessary to find an alternative way to generate student interest and participation.
Also, because there was no longer any money to compensate faculty members (for emceeing, judging, etc.), motivating colleagues to promote the event suddenly became another major challenge. To meet these challenges, I regularly consulted with university administration, our organizing committee, and departmental faculty members. I also conducted some additional research and created two important videos that were widely recognized as crucial to the success of the project. The one that focuses on the importance of multiple literacies in the 21st century is posted below:
Educational Video: a research-based tutorial on the importance of 21st century literacies
Another key aspect to generating student engagement and participation in this project was the sample certificate that we posted in a prominent location on the festival website.. Students were able to read what the certificate says about “collaboration” and “21st century literacies.” A duplicate is published in the toggle below:
More Information About the Value of Participating in the Hanyang English Film Festival
As the info-video above shows, being able to say that you have participated in a university film festival can provide a real benefit for your academic and career goals. HYU students who successfully participate in the 2016 Hanyang English Film Festival will be recipients of a certificate of merit, similar to the sample shown below. This would be a valuable artifact for your portfolio!
Outcomes and Reflections
The annual film festival is, in every sense, a long-term project. Planning for the 2016 iteration began exactly one year earlier, when the baton was handed over to me and I was advised to begin considering who to ask to take on the role of co-chair. To make it even more challenging, the person who originally agreed to take on this role was soon dealing with a medical emergency in his family, which meant that I had to ask someone else.
Thankfully, the original co-chair was able to keep his commitment to co-host the 2016 event and he and his partner did a fabulous job. It was gratifying to hear from many other colleagues that, thanks to the amazing team efforts that our committee members, emcees, judges, and faculty colleagues had made, this was the “best HEFF ever.”
Because I was asked to chair the committee again for next year’s HEFF, I have already begun working on some of the improvements that we agreed to have in place for 2017: a more granular rubric for judges; a restoration of the previous levels of funding; and a stronger emphasis on required thematic elements, which will help with the final judging process.
One major implication of this project’s many positive outcomes is the fact that I am not lacking in ability to organize, innovate, collaborate, and/or lead by example.
HEFF Project B: Integrating Technology for Filmmakers and Judges
(Web Designer: October, 2013 to Present)
Project B Data
- Role: Technologist / Web designer
- Number of collaborating committee members: 6
- Platforms: WordPress.com, self-hosted WordPress
- URL: www.hanyangprofessors.com/heff2016
- Integrated applications: Google Forms, Google Drive, Jotform.com, YouTube
Note: This site shares space for both the film festival and a presentation contest, also run by instructors in the College English Education Committee (CEEC).
To provide film festival participants with basic information – such as rules and important dates – I volunteered to create a web site at WordPress.com. A year later, the site was moved to a self-hosted WordPress installation to allow for easier and faster maintenance, using a commercial theme that cannot be installed at WordPress.com. The self-hosted site also provides more options for such affordances as enabling students to submit their films online and distributing their submitted work more efficiently to film festival judges. The audio reflection provides more details.
For Student Use Only:
For Judges’ Use Only:
Outcomes and Reflections
When I first volunteered to create the website, it was not without some trepidation. A few of the more senior committee members were not known for being enthusiastic about technology and it was vital that I take an approach that would allow them to decide for themselves if a dedicated film festival website was something they could support. Fortunately, they agreed to the proposition and, as a result of the numerous positive outcomes that eventually resulted, they are now beginning to develop greater interest in using technology in their own work. The implications of this are far reaching – especially for a technologist working in a collegial culture that cherishes autonomy and freedom of thought more than nearly anything else.
Tap/click the button to see the HEFF web pages.
HEFF Project C: Co-hosting the Third Annual Hanyang English Film Festival
(Emcee: May 19, 2015)
Prior to the 2015 film festival, all previous red carpet screenings were hosted by individuals. They were very good; however, the organizing committee decided to try it with two hosts. As one who enjoys acting and interacting in auspicious events like this, I was quick to volunteer. I was also very fortunate to have such an open-minded colleague to team up with.
Outcomes and Reflections
As usually happens in high-profile collaborative efforts that involve people from divergent backgrounds, this was one of the most enjoyable and enlightening learning experiences that I have been fortunate enough to enjoy in professional practice. Leading up to the May 19th event, my partner and I met on at least two occasions for lengthy brainstorming and planning sessions. The day before/of the event included some rough rehearsals and, as a result, many of the kinks were worked out and, although not perfect, the festival’s first ever co-hosted event completed successfully – and on time. 🙂