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Education Featured Article

December 03, 2012

The Verizon Foundation Makes Grant to Jacob Burns Film Center to Enhance Education

By Shamila Janakiraman, TMCnet Contributor


The Verizon (News - Alert) Foundation has awarded a $50,000 grant to the Jacob Burns Film Center (JBFC) to enhance existing education programs. The grant will be utilized to provide iPads to students in the underserved schools in Westchester County and at the JBFC Media Arts Lab in Pleasantville.


Also, the method by which teachers teach and the way in which students learn by leveraging technology in the classroom will be improved by the grant. The Jacob Burns Film Center is a not-for-profit cultural arts organization.

“The Verizon Foundation is focused on supporting programs that use technology to help students achieve,” said Justina Nixon-Saintil, director of Education Initiatives for the Verizon Foundation. “We’re proud our grant will further enhance JBFC's existing educational programs and take them to the next level.”

Officials revealed that the grant will be used to serve about 520 students and 30 teachers during the 2012-2013 school year. The grant covers three education programs namely the Minds in Motion for fourth graders, Digital Storytelling for teens and young adults and Reel Change for teens.

Students in elementary schools will be taught to write, storyboard, direct and produce a stop-motion animated film in the Minds in Motion interdisciplinary education program. The 12-week course will end with a Red Carpet Premiere at the JBFC Theater, where the films made by the students will be screened.

Digital Storytelling guides students in creating multiscreen projects, installations, video sculptures and interactive design. Reel Change is a multimedia program which teaches students to produce a short film that covers social issues.

JBFC will use the finds from the grant to buy iPads for curriculum expansion and development besides also supplying other equipment accessories. Also, salaries for faculty and staff and expenditure on professional development and volunteer training for them will come from the grant.

Emily Keating, director of Education Programs for JBFC, noted, “The JBFC is thrilled to receive this grant from the Verizon Foundation. Giving students the tools and knowledge to communicate visually is imperative in this media- saturated culture. Access to tablets enables students to develop important technical and literacy skills in an interface that is intuitive and exciting.”

Recently Loras College also received a $77,000 grant from the Verizon Foundation to support STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education.

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Edited by Rachel Ramsey




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