Students' War Documentaries Aired on MHz
School of Communication alum Bob Edwards's famous voice supplied the gravitas, but it was SOC students who were responsible for the rock solid content of Homefront: Stories of America at War, the 60-minute television special produced by the school’s TV Documentary class.
Striking in its depth, objectivity, and professionalism, the show is a series of seven documentary segments, all produced, reported, and filmed by students. The special aired on MHz Networks, a noncommercial broadcaster with an audience of 15 million in eight major markets including Washington, and can currently be viewed online.
"This was a great class to work with, and the evidence is up there on the screen," said professor Rick Rockwell, who taught the course.
The students explored the repercussions of US foreign policy through personal stories, including a North Carolina father’s tale of his son's loss of innocence, an expectant mother’s description of her once easy-going husband, now suffering from fits of rage induced by post-traumatic stress syndrome, and a man’s touching recollection of embracing his family after Sept. 11.
"The students are the ones who did the heavy lifting here,” Rockwell observed. “They're the storytellers. They're right on the cusp of being in the working world. They need to be able to demonstrate exactly what this is pushing them to do, which is [produce] something that can be on the air. At a certain point the student has to make that leap, otherwise we haven't done our job."