WASHINGTON—150 student-made documentaries were recognized as part of C-SPAN’s 2020 StudentCam documentary competition, but the grand prize winner was “Cmd-Delete: Technology’s Damaging Effect on Democracy in 2020” by Jason Lin, Amar Karoshi and Sara Yen from The Harker School in San Jose, Calif.
C-SPAN has held the StudentCam competition since 2006, working with local cable TV providers across the country to invite middle and high school students to produce short documentaries about a subject of national importance. For the 2020 competition, the theme was “What’s Your Vision in 2020?,” as students were asked to explore an issue they would most want presidential candidates to address during the campaign.
As the grand prize winner “Cmd-Delete” will air on C-SPAN at 6:50 a.m. ET and throughout the day on April 21. Lin, Karoshi and Yen will receive $5,000 in cash prizes for winning the grand prize; they also were voted the “Fan Favorite” by the public, which awards them an additional $500.
C-SPAN also recognized first prize winners based on East, Central and West regions and a middle school division. Those winners are:
- East: Thomas McKenna, “Overreach from the Oval Office;” home-schooled student from Lovettsville, Va. (documentary will air April 20 at 6:50 a.m. ET)
- Central: Mason Chow and Leviathan Lee, “200,000;” Jenks High School, Jenks, Okla. (documentary will air April 19 at 6:50 a.m. ET)
- West: Hamid Torabzadeh, Pia Hao and Katherine Padilla, “Vision 2020: Restoring the Integrity of American Democracy;” Long Beach Polytechnic High School, Long Beach, Calif. (documentary will air April 18 at 6:50 a.m. ET)
- Middle School Division: Marissa Boucher, Yuna Chun and Defne Ustundag, “Blackout: Misinformation in the Age of Social Media;” Eastern Middle School, Silver Spring, Md. (documentary will air April 17 at 6:50 a.m. ET)
All first prize winners received a cash prize of $3,000.
C-SPAN also recognized and awarded cash prizes to 16 second prizes, 32 third prizes and 97 honorable mention prizes. In total, C-SPAN awarded $100,000 to the winning documentarians.
All of the winning videos are available at www.studentcam.org. They can be used in a broadcast with attribution to C-SPAN.