Dordt College News

Dordt students win Iowa Motion Picture Award for ag documentary

May 19, 2011

In the 2010-11 academic year alone, Prairie Grass Productions, the Dordt College digital media production department, has garnered several awards including a Webby, an Ava, and a Davey.

Now there are two more to add to the collection from the Iowa Motion Picture Association.
Dordt College students Gary Huitsing, Brett Leyendekker, and Aaron Yoder won two awards at the 20th annual Iowa Motion Picture Association (IMPA) ceremony for their documentary “Sioux County Agriculture.” They were honored in the categories of “Student Production – College documentary” and Student Production – Long Form.” The ceremony took place April 23 in Johnston, Iowa.

The documentary was created by Prairie Grass Productions and features local farmers and Sioux County’s agriculture industry. The three students and on-camera host Andy Schuttinga spent a semester interviewing local farmers, filming local farms, and immersing themselves in learning about Sioux County’s advanced agriculture industry.

The documentary run time is 52 minutes, and it is divided into eight episodes to help educate tourists and students. Episodes include beef, goats, dairy, crops, sheep, eggs (laying hens), chickens (broilers), and pigs.

The IMPA Ceremony is an annual celebration and opportunity for informational workshops on different topics pertaining to filmmaking. The event is for all filmmakers, not just students. Films go through a judging process based on selection by Iowa production members, creative and technical elements, and guidelines developed by industry professionals in each category.

The Dordt College digital media program offers students real-world, marketable skills in film, video production, and animation. Digital media production professor Mark Volkers says, “Dordt College strives to turn out technically trained graduates who are equipped to move into positions of leadership in the film and video industry.”

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