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National Youth Leadership Forum: Digital Media, Film & Journalism

Program Highlights

New York Film Academy

During your time at NYLF Digital Media, Film & Journalism, you’ll spend three days on-site at the New York Film Academy working with specialists in the fields of broadcast journalism, filmmaking, and cinematography. This is your chance to learn the arts of directing, staging, videography, and post-production from the experts as you create and shoot a short film or broadcast news segment. You’ll also have the opportunity to interact with leading journalists, producers, and media figures.





Journalist for a Day

Digital-age media requires a unique set of skills. At NYLF Digital Media, Film & Journalism, you will develop these must-have skills during writing and interviewing workshops, an AP style challenge, and group meetings. You also have the chance to apply them when you work in teams to create a digital publication, taking on the roles of editor-in-chief, managing editor, lead reporter, copy editor, graphic designer, and more.

This conference-wide project will culminate in a mock Pulitzer Prize ceremony, giving you a taste of this coveted honor. 

See what last year’s scholars were able to accomplish by visiting the sites of the Session One and Session Two winners.


Lights, Camera, Action!

Learn the skills required to produce a two-minute film or TV news story while taking your turn both in front of and behind the camera. You and your peers will experiment with the latest technology and shooting techniques, and discover the elements of journalism and the visual vocabulary of television news. You’ll learn how to use an HD video camera, record field audio, and edit video using nonlinear software.

Learn what goes on behind-the-scenes at TV news programs. Working in crews, you’ll take on the role of director, camera person, assistant camera person, actor, or editor to complete the project. All team members will have the opportunity to shoot an on-location "stand-up." At the end of the project, you’ll screen your completed stories for your other NYLF Digital Media, Film & Journalism peers.

You’ll take intensive classes in directing, writing, camera work, editing, and post production, and will learn to use professional equipment and digital editing software. Explore the art of cinematography, including composition, camera placement, lens choice, and lighting as you create a short film and capture quality cinematic images. 



Speakers and Site Visits

During a Career Panel discussion, you’ll interact with New York Film Academy experts as they talk about their experiences and give career advice.

You’ll also have the opportunity to learn from other engaging guest speakers, who may include media executives, syndicated columnists, reporters, communications professors, and journalists.

Previous guest speakers have included:

  • BJ Levin, two-time Emmy Award-winning Executive Producer and Showrunner
  • Steve Daly, Writer and Reporter, Newsweek and Entertainment Weekly
  • Samuel Freedman, Professor, Columbia Graduate School of Journalism; former Pulitzer Prize finalist
  • Mary Glick, M.A., Associate Director, American Press Institute
  • Ronald Gordon, President, Telemundo
  • Amy Ellis Nutt, Pulitzer Prize-winning Science Writer, The Washington Post
  • Lillian A. Smith, CEO, LS Production Works
  • Jon Wertheim, J.D., Senior Writer, Sports Illustrated
  • Steve Kendall, Features Editor. BuzzFeed

Several site visits take place throughout the forum. You’ll visit some of the most impressive and vibrant areas of New York City including Times Square, Rockefeller Center, Greenwich Village, South Street Seaport, and the New York University campus. In this world-famous city full of excitement, you’ll have the chance to see firsthand what attracts visitors from all over.