Barrytown College “Direct the Change” Summer Media Institute

We’re looking to do something new at Barrytown College this summer—to share the vision and stories of a rapidly changing world through digital media and inspired story-telling. On July 6, 2015 we will begin the 3rd year of our on-campus Summer Media Institute which has the theme, Direct the Change. Under the guidance of experienced educators and media professionals, students will learn to use the power of digital filmmaking to create a variety of inspirational and educational videos.

2015 Direct the change header

Help us Direct the Change

Download the "Direct the Change" Flier

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Our Plan

Direct the Change  Media Projects in the past 2 years have explored such topics as male/female differences, spirituality, how people show affection to the ones they love, a human/canine relationship, and the impact of sacrificial love.

While sharing new information, documentaries will also reveal how there is little more powerful and life-changing than truthful statements from “non-experts.”

The program is designed to introduce the art, aesthetics and techniques of non-fiction as well as other forms of filmmaking.

Through the creation of small intern teams consisting of 4-5 participants each and the creation of 2-3 video stories per group, interns will engage in every phase of filmmaking: storyboarding, directing, shooting, and editing on Final Cut Pro. Our goal is to nurture the talents, skills, and development of all participants, incorporating the perspectives that each brings. The internship will conclude with an open screening of all videos produced and posting on our media websites.

“Barrytown’s Summer Media Intensive gave me another vision as to what I could possibly be doing with my life...I like the type of person it takes to create a documentary. It's a powerful medium to reach people, so it gave me insight into what it takes and how I could possibly fit into that.”


“When you're behind the scenes, you see all the effort that goes in. I am proud of the videos we made.”


“I learned so much about myself. It was more than I expected. It inspired me to pursue a career as a filmmaker.”

Last Year on Direct the Change

Barrytown College’s 2014 Summer Media Institute concluded on August 1 with a public showing of 9 new videos created by a diverse group of students from the East and West Coasts, as well as from Europe and Latin America.

Film Crew Interview woman

The theme of this year’s Media Institute was “Relationships” and several of the videos dealt with this theme, including The Human Connection: Affection, Adam vs. Eve: part one, Boys and (mostly) Girls, Master of My Emotions and a video exploring a human/animal relationship called Mandy and Rhonda.  Two videos, Healing Body and Soul through the Inner Life Force and a music video called I Know a Secret, expressed powerful spiritual themes. A Day in the Life takes a comic look at the life of one student at the Summer Institute. A final video was 3 Perspectives on Barrytown College.

video-the-human-connection video-adam-v-eve video-boys-and-mostly-girls

video-master-of-emotion video-mandy-and-rhonda  video-healing-body-and-soul

video-i-know-a-secret  video-a-day-in-the-life  video-3-perspectives-on-barrytown-college

Students expressed how much the Institute helped them to develop their media skills, with such comments as “I took large steps forward in the creative process, something that’s been difficult for me for years,” “I learned how to use the equipment and Final Cut Pro on a much more professional level,” and “I was able to see our ideas come to life!”

Students expressed a lot of enthusiasm about the 4 instructors.

Peter VanGeldern

Peter van Geldern,
Lead Instructor

“He is a great mentor, and helped me bring my project to life;” “He is passionate, enthusiastic and a good mentor;” “[He was] very helpful, gave space but interjected when needed.”

Jae Malabunga

Jae Malabunga,
Cinematography Instructor

“very knowledgeable about film and cameras, helped convey important concepts.”

Lena Yasutake

Lena Yasutake,
Acting Coach

“Lena’s teaching style was direct and clear, very interesting and professional. The skills she taught (voice, make-up, interview, reading, and dress for on-camera) were all valuable.” “Very helpful on a one-on-one level” “Great help with concepts about self-composure and behavior in the context of acting..”

Kevin Pickard head shot

Kevin Pickard,

“Inspiring, helped me get past some of my inhibitions and gave great advice (especially when it came to getting ideas out)” and “gave us all great ideas for how we can improve our projects.”

Behind The Scenes Gallery

View the embedded image gallery online at:

Apply Now

direct the change 2We encourage anyone interested in crafting media to tell stories about our changing world to apply.

Summer Media Institute Application Form

Applicants will be informed regarding acceptance into the program within 5 days of submitting their application.

Please direct any program and logistical questions to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Applications must be submitted to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. according to the registration table below in order to receive the discounted rate.

We look forward to working with you soon!



5 day Intensive

5 day Intensive (w/ room & board)

4 week Media Institute

Media Institute (w/ room & board)


By May 1






By June 1






By July 1






Enrolled at a college? You can take this for academic credits.

  • Residential Media Program with 3 academic credits, $2,699-
  • Commuter Media Program with 3 academic credits, $1,799-

Federal financial aid for qualified, enrolled applicants taking the course for academic credit may be available. For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

If you have any questions concerning video production during the internship, please contact Peter van Geldern, Program Director, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . 

Get to know the Instructors


Peter VanGeldern

Peter van Geldern

With his advanced visual esthetic and 35 years as a professional designer, Peter's media arts focus has led him to career as an adjunct professor of Digital Media Arts at the University of Bridgeport, Barrytown College and Bridgeport International academy. In recent years, he has focused on developing a “flipped class learning lab” to help students develop their own talents and skills in an immersive mentored environment.

Simon Kinney

Simon Kinney

After success in the music industry across Australia and Europe, Simon became a Film and Video Producer based in New York. His talents soon led him to engagements in this capacity with clients including Shell, GM, CNN, PBS Television, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, NBC, JPMorgan Chase, UBS and Unilever.

His present engagement is with UrbanAdLab, a boutique brand marketing development firm. Before this, he was an Executive Producer at Burson Marsteller and Todd Street Productions in New York, directing the music an event divisions respectively. From 2000 to 2008, he made a name for himself in the television industry, producing programming for PBS, Discovery, Canal Plus France and ITV Channel 4 in London.

His latest projects embrace interactive design with animation and live action. He writes most of the scripts he works on, either individually or in collaboration with other writers. He enjoys meeting a challenge with projects that demand creative ideas in short time frames.

Kevin Pickard head shot

Kevin Pickard

Kevin Pickard, a native of Houston Texas, has been an active producer of music and documentary film in the New York area since 1976. He won the coveted Anstead award as a film and music student at the University of Southern California. He furthered his studies at the Fontainbleu Conservatory in Paris with Nadia Boulanger, teacher of such noted composers as Aaron Copland, Phillip Glass, and Quincy Jones.

Mr Pickard has collaborated on numerous projects in film and television. He was executive director of the Public Television Station, PCTV in Westchester, NY, where he produced and directed hundreds of public interest programs in community affairs and the arts. Among them: Religion and Interfaith, the Arts in Westchester, About Writing, Community Spotlight, and the Listening Place. He then became director of the Universal Peace Federation's Media Division and produced international programs, including the web television project- This included multi-language documentaries from around the world, with documentary series such as: Spirit of Service, Portraits of Peace, World of NGOs, and Global Family.

Mr. Pickard began a regular news series in collaboration with United Press International featuring weekly interviews of UN Ambassadors, Members of Congress, and national newsmakers. His documentary features include: Discovering the World of Intelligent Design, Women Peacemakers , New World Encyclopedia, the Bering Strait Bridge Project, and Play Soccer Make Peace.
He also developed intern programs for SUNY Purchase College, Westchester Community Cllege, and Bridgeport Academy, each designed to teach students skills to produce documentaries and web-based video.

Lena Yasutake

Lena Yasutake

Lena Yasutake has been a passionate educator both inside and out of the classroom for 12 years. In addition to Musical Theater, Dance, Drama and Costume Design she has also taught Art, History, Character Education and Physical education classes. She has written, produced, directed and performed in plays and musicals with subject matter ranging from Biblical to civil disobedience. She has an eclectic taste in theater herself enjoying everything from the most opulently produced Marriage of Figaro to a stark one woman production of Then God said “Ha”!

Eric Wenzel

Eric Wenzel

As a specialist in learning and organizational development, Eric Wenzel has led a corporate university and delivered training programs serving companies like Mercedes-Benz and the New York Times. He is an advocate of personalized educational and career development and sees technology and media as essential and powerful tools to make the world a better place.

Jae Malabunga

Jae Malabunga

Jae Malabunga is an independent filmmaker based in New York City. He has worked on various film sets (Narrative feature, shorts, commercials, music videos for signed and starting artists) since 2010. A talented and skilled cinematographer, Jae is looking forward to sharing the basics of cinematography with Media Institute students this summer as he did at the 2013 Media Institute.


Helpful Resources


You will find a variety of websites listed below providing resources for scriptwriters. We hope that these internet resources will help you in crafting your video scripts. We also recommend digging around further to see what else you might find out there. There are many books on scriptwriting available to you, for instance—you may be surprised to find what helpful resources your local library or bookstore have waiting for you.


Film Genres

Documentary:  The documentary genre provides an excellent way to share true stories and personal experiences.

  • Although TED Talks are not quite documentary, they share a prominent quality in their direct portrayal of the personal narrative.  Check out this talk, “Your Elusive Creative Genius” from Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love.
  • “Heart” and “What Would You Give?”, the 2014 Barrytown College Video Competition 2nd and 3rd place prize-winners can be seen at

Here are other genres, which are sometimes incorporated in documentaries.

Animation:  Animations allow for a great range of graphic and thematic creativity for your story ideas.

Short Story: A well-told short story can impact audiences in profound ways, bringing thought-provoking ideas to life in only minutes.

Music Video: There’s nothing quite like watching an excellent song put to an excellent video—a music video can open the hearts and minds of its viewers in a matter of seconds.

Images used in this article can be found on the following websites:


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