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Catalyst teams with Sundance Co-Founder, Cirina Catania, to launch the High School Media Collective

Catalyst is proud to announce The High School Media Collective, a new non-profit online community that brings together high school filmmakers, streamers, and broadcasters from all over North America in collaboration with Sundance Film Festival co-founder, Cirina Catania.

This program is an open forum for student filmmakers to network, share ideas and connect with peers and professionals. To kick-start their learning, we run free live in-person educational events where professional tutors, industry gurus, and filmmakers teach them how to make movies, followed by mentorship, remote live training, online tutorials and literary resources.

For example, the current program in Chicago is a series of Lunch and Learn Sessions. These sessions take place during the 2022 Lake Forest Summer Experience which is led by LFHS head of media education Steve Douglass and with active participation from Vince Vaughn, actor/writer/producer. Students have registered for a two-week on-site intensive training (middle schoolers in the morning and high schoolers in the afternoons).

The High School Media Collective’s contribution as one of the sponsors of the event is to feature special learning sessions from the amazing trainers and technologists (many are also official mentors at HSMC – and all have volunteered their very valuable time to help high schoolers).

Filmmaker Cirina Catania, the Founder and Lead Creative at Catania Studios, has been involved as a writer, director, producer, cinematographer or marketing exec on over 150 film, television and new media projects for the big screen as well as for networks such as National Geographic, Discovery, etc. She is one of the co-founders and former director of the Sundance Film Festival and former senior executive at MGM-UA and United Artists. Cirina lives in LA, D.C. and Berlin when she is not on the road filming for her projects or for clients, or speaking as a tech evangelist for companies such as Blackmagic Design and Lumberjack System. She is the Showrunner and Host of OWC RADiO and recently started the non-profit, High School Media Collective with founding sponsor Blackmagic Design. Cirina is a member of Local 600 (IATSE), the PGA, WGA, the National Press Club, and the NPPA.


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