I have started editing. It’s been an interesting ride so far. Seeing some of the looks and hearing some of the comments that I have been getting since this project began has been really eye-opening for me. Hopefully, I can portray that well enough. One thing is for sure though: out of everyone that I have spoken with, no one can seem to pinpoint an identity that belongs to the school. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done.
Not really much to report this week. A little bit of B-roll, but that’s about it. This is going to be an ongoing project and I’m not certain I’ll have a full finished product before the end of this semester. We’ll see though.
Got an interview with Emilie Theriault (finally!) after what seems like a long time of trying to set it up. A lot of good stuff to come from that as well.
Things have been busy lately, so I haven’t really done much else. B-roll is coming along, albeit slowly. Also, trying to find the right music for the documentary is a challenge.
On a side note, I’ve decided that I’m not going to seek compensation for this project. I’m doing this mainly so I can get an open discourse started about BYU-Idaho’s identity as a school, if there even is one, without those with an opposite opinion than one that is glowing about the school being labeled as entitled and told (in a much nicer way…sometimes), “sit down and shut up”. We can’t be afraid to speak up.
I just recently did an hour-long Skype interview with Mason Adamson who had transferred from BYU to BYU-Idaho before his mission and then transferred back after he earned an Associate’s Degree. It was really very informative and his unique situation helped shape his view on what has happened to BYU-Idaho, as well as a better direction on how this film is going to play out. He and I came in contact after the news of the Thor statue being donated finally came to light. Just like myself, he has a deep love for this school since he credits it for some of the best life-changing decisions of his life.
One impression that came out was how disappointed he was in the direction the school was heading, not to be critical but to offer some insights on some of the problems that are there in almost every facet of this institution.
One thing that came up as a solution was to keep things transparent at all levels, as well as increasing communication between each of the departments (maybe not applying methods from the Harvard Business College to the university as a whole would help as well).
I’m not going to post a video here since I’m still editing it and I want to make sure everything is done in context, something that is difficult even from a news reporting perspective. In the end, I think this will be very beneficial to the film as a whole, and Mason has my full thanks for agreeing to do the interview, even if my questions were a little too complicated to answer all at once.
Welcome Nate Matthewson to the project!
As of right now, he is helping me hunt down people to interview as well as location scouting.
More updates to come.
The topic for this documentary has been brewing for some time. When “Thor”, the Ricks College Viking, was donated to a local high school with no one’s knowledge until long after the fact, it became very clear that BYU-Idaho was losing its heritage, and, by effect, the unity among the people involved with the school.
Questions began circling around with me. What is our identity? Do we even have one? Is our mascot, our symbol, our rallying point as a school, really “The Student Face” as Vice-President Eyring asserts? If so, how sad has this school become? Does anyone really know for themselves what the Spirit of Ricks is without falling back on Presidents Clark or Bednar?
I began by narrowing down three general questions to ask random people, students, faculty, alumni, etc.
1.) How long have you been involved with the school?
2.) Where do you think the school is headed and do you think that’s a good or bad thing?
3.) “The Holy Ghost and its attendant gifts…” as Elder Bednar put it could be applied to any of the CES schools. Without using anyone else’s words but your own, what does The Spirit of Ricks mean to you on a personal level?
The goal is to figure out what they say.