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Think Global, Act Local - And Get It All On Film

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Know an aspiring high school journalist with a great idea and a video camera? Are you a teacher, or do you have a camera you could share? Encourage her to apply for the Think Globally, Act Locally video contest. Most exciting categories in my book? "Growing Up Girl: Challenges Facing Girls Everywhere" and "World Water: Access to Clean Water."

The People Speak and the RTNDF High School Broadcast Journalism Project invite U.S. high school students to create a 1-2 minute video news story highlighting a local angle on one of four global issues:

*Growing Up Girl: Challenges Facing Girls Everywhere

*World Water: Access to Clean Water

*Kick the Habit: De-Carbonizing Our Lifestyles and Economies

*World Heritage: Local Sites and International Interests

And yes, I'm a little bit biased, and have put them in order of my favorites. But imagine the powerful stories that young people could tell through video, whether about the challenges they face, or the solutions they envision or already see happening in their communities!

For each category, two U.S. high school students and their teachers will win a trip to the United Nations Foundation Youth Leadership Summit in New York City, July 17-19, 2008. More details and fliers can be found at The People Speak, a website aimed at engaging young people with world issues and inspiring them to be leaders and innovators. I recommend its RSS feed, which is how I heard about the contest.

I myself am excited to see young journalists encouraged to play with video early. Here at Berkeley, we're constantly challenged to find new, compelling ways of telling stories, and video is the latest trend. I do think video, as it becomes easier to create, share and access - for professional and citizen journalists alike - is a powerful lens with great potential, and I'm looking forward to seeing these issues magnified through the eyes of today's creative youth.

The contest started Feb. 1, and the deadline to submit entries is May 1, 2008 - so get those cameras rolling! And again, if you've got access to a video camera (like I do) or are a high school teacher, think of ways you might be able to help a local student tell her story.

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