An integral part of Trinity’s Chicago Semester is the experiential learning students gain through internships. Derek Harris ’10 of Mokena, Illinois, took this opportunity a step further to benefit Chicago high school students being served by Erie Neighborhood House where Harris is currently interning.
Harris arranged for 14 students in Erie’s multimedia apprenticeship Visionaries to visit Trinity’s campus and use the resources in the Art and Communication Center to learn filmmaking and editing.
“Using Trinity’s new lab and their video cameras was appealing because all the youth could have hands-on experience,” said Riza Falk, digital media coordinator with the Youth Options Unlimited department at Erie. “Derek has been working with the program through his internship and did an amazing job putting the field trip together.”
Harris, a Trinity psychology major, wants to work with underprivileged youth and his Chicago Semester internship provides the opportunity for him to serve a broad geographical range of Latino communities.
“Riza and my supervisors at Erie have been very flexible in terms of maximizing my opportunities to learn and grow during my time with them,” said Harris. “They have taken into account my professional goals, as well as my personal interests, and have encouraged me to not only participate in programs that they already offer, like Visionaries, but also to come up with programming ideas of my own.”
Knowing Trinity’s commitment to serving Chicagoland communities, Harris worked with faculty and staff to arrange the field trip. “The students had such a great time at Trinity. We shared a lot of laughs, and they produced some great videos, learning a lot throughout the production process. I am proud I was able to represent Trinity and am very grateful for the College’s help with this project.”
The Field Trip
Students began the morning with video camera instruction and editing taught by Jake Szafranski ’09, ARCC tech professional. The admissions department then treated the students to lunch in the Dining Hall and a tour of campus. Students spent the remainder of the day working in five groups to videotape short films of their own creation.
The added benefit to the youth besides the “invaluable” hands-on experience, according to Falk, was the chance for the students to learn about college opportunities and be exposed to the campus environment, underscoring Erie’s emphasis on the pursuit of higher education.
“We had a great time, learned a lot, and are incredibly grateful to Trinity for allowing us the opportunity to use it equipment and facilities,” said Falk.
What some of the Visionaries said about their visit to Trinity:
“I learned a lot about the college and the classes. I had never heard of Trinity before. I really enjoyed using the computer lab and walking around the campus and inside the buildings. Everyone was so nice and gave us a really cool tour around campus. We got to hear about a lot of the things Derek did when he was on campus.” Ady Zarate, 17
“The field trip to Trinity was a lot of fun because we had VIP access to the buildings on campus.” Isabella Corona, 14
“Thank you for letting us go all around your campus. We truly appreciate you guys trusting us with your equipment!” Christian Dillon, 15