Practical experience with real clients is an integral part of our media arts program. In addition to advanced coursework and client referrals, many video production and design students are hired by Stone Path Studios, Bethany’s student-run production company. Stone Path is unique in that it works with many non-profit clients who have particularly compelling missions or who might not otherwise be able to afford quality production work. One example of this is Stone Path’s work with the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women cause, the national movement to end heart disease and stroke in women.
Bethany senior Jeremiah Kuehne worked with the American Heart Association for the second consecutive year, leading the production below that tells Elissa Johnson’s moving story of surviving viral cardiomyopathy. The video was used at the Go Red for Women luncheon last week in Mankato and is also being used online. Take a look.
“It was nice to be asked back to work on the project for Go Red for a second year,” commented Jeremiah. “They seemed to be really happy with the project last year and from a business side it’s very exciting when a client comes back to you again. I really enjoy learning about people and hearing their stories, especially when they are talking about something that made a big difference in their lives. It’s amazing to walk into someone’s house that I don’t know and leave with a sense of a connection with the people I help interview. The emotional side of it is very rewarding in the sense that I love knowing I can help these people tell their stories in an impactful way that captures the attention of the audience at the Go Red event and an even broader base online.”
Katie Ojanpa, a member of the executive board at Go Red for Women, reports that the organization raised over $37,000 for women’s heart health and that Bethany was a big part of this effort. “The work Jeremiah did was most impressive,” she said. “The finished video was edited and produced to near perfection.”
Jeremiah was assisted by fellow student Sarah Meilner. “The highest compliment I can pay is that both Jeremiah and Sarah acted as true professional photojournalists,” said Katie. They were on time, prepared, and eager to bring our survivor stories to life. They were compassionate and gracious through hours of the interview process. Top notch!”
This project is a great example of Stone Path’s mission—to create productions with a purpose. Jeremiah summarizes this sentiment: “It’s nice to work on big flashy projects, but there’s something very fulfilling about listening to someone open up about their life and bring that story to a larger audience to raise awareness for a cause that makes a difference in the community.”
And we’ll close with these touching words from Katie:
“These are powerful stories and the impact of them ripples beyond just the survivors and their families. The survivors rarely see themselves as heroic and their caretakers are never acknowledged publicly. These videos provide them the opportunity to realize the profound nature of their experiences. Personally, these stories affect any of us whose lives have been touched by heart disease.”
– Katie Ojanpa, Go Red for Women