Fishers Students Honored For C-SPAN Competition

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FISHERS -

A pair of students from Fishers High School was celebrated today for a Second Prize-winning entry in C-SPAN's annual StudentCam video documentary competition. Sophie Foley and Lauren Higgenbotham were presented with their prize money check and StudentCam certificate of merit as the C-SPAN Bus traveled to Fishers for a school-wide ceremony that included classmates, teachers, family and elected officials. The students were among 340, out of more than 6,300 participants, to win a portion of the $100,000 prize pool.

The theme for this year's competition was "What does it mean to be American? Choose a constitutional right, national characteristic, or historic event and explain how it defines the American experience." Foley says they chose to shine some light on the freedom of speech in America.

"We thought that, since it's so ingrained in American history and still ingrained in current society, that that would be something we could dive in depth on," said Foley. "I think this could go for any city, but with such a wide social media use especially as teenagers, people don't understand that that is freedom of speech and how people can use that. So we talk about that in our video about social media and how people use it incorrectly and correctly and that's specifically Fishers and how we're surrounded by that in our every day life."

Foley, who will soon attend Xavier University to major in early childhood education, says she was shocked to learn she and Lauren had taken the Second Prize. She says she hopes to use the experience to continue to stay politically active.

WATCH: "Students Ruin the First Amendment"

Jenae Green with C-SPAN says the students were judged on the content of their videos, with an emphasis on getting a wide range of opinions on a particular topics. 

"For the students that are doing the competition, you don't have to be the best filmmaker out there or anything like that," said Green. "We just want to make sure that you're diving in, getting to the issues, showing both sides, and truly making sure that it's a full, well-rounded video when it comes to the content of the topic that you're talking about."

As part of the competition, the Grand Prize winners received $5,000. First Prize winners received $3,000, followed by Second Prize earning $1,500 and Third Prize winners receiving $750. 

  • Perspectives

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      "Problems cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them," is attributed to Einstein over 75 years ago. This still holds true, particularly in challenging communications. Many people address conflict at the level it was created by rehashing and building more evidence for their ‘side’ of an argument. Repeating a position tends to intensify the separation of people.

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