Brownsville Media Lab Screens Films On Identity, Poverty and Police.

The Brownsville Community Justice Center and Reel Works screened films from the recent piloted Brownsville Media Lab program.

The screenings took place at the
New York Institute of Technology Auditorium
1871 Broadway @ 63rd St.

The filmmakers tackled tough issues they are grappling in their young lives like identity, beauty, race, police, violence, poverty and grief.  They felt a great sense of accomplishment and a stronger connection to the community by sharing very personal things they thought only they grapple with.

When asked what was the key thing he learned from the filmmaking process, Ray Graham said, “Patience.  I wanted to quit the lab two times because I didn’t think the film was coming together.”

Judging from the audience’s supportive response, Graham’s patience and the gamble to open up paid off, they learned they are not alone with their feelings and perceptions about living in Brownsville Brooklyn in these volatile times.

The Brownsville Media Lab runs simultaneous with other tracks that include the Young Adult Entrepreneurship track, Community Benefits Projects track and the Mark Morris Dance Group track. All tracks are to develop our youth and provide new career opportunities that at one time seemed unimaginable.

Missed the screening? Check out the videos below.

Filmmaker Ray Graham on what it means to him to live in a community like Brownsville, Brooklyn.

Filmmaker Jeff Cantave tackles his fantasy self of wanting lighter skin, straighter hair, and more money versus his real self.

Filmmaker Marjorie Trotman on how taking selfies makes her feels good about herself.

The Brownsville Community Justice Center helps young men and women, ages 16-22, who have had contact with the criminal justice system. Their mission is to reduce incarceration and recidivism amongst the Brownsville youth.  The Center helps young people develop professional goals and skills through GED preparation, college application support, entrepreneurship, media, cooking, dance and business classes.  These development opportunities often lead to internships, full-time jobs and higher education.  The Center also offers an array of counseling and other services to help these young people realize their full potential.

We are thrilled to be part of the IE@Columbia, the competitive Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program at Columbia Business School.  Through the help of The Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center and Executive Education.  Professors and Entrepreneurs, Murray Low and Clifford Schorer have assembled a stellar line up of fellow entrepreneurs and professors to help us develop our ideas.

Our idea, The Brownsville Innovation Hub, educates participants like the ones above to not only learn storytelling and filmmaking skills,  but also learn other technology innovations like learning to code, 3D printing, game development, robotics and develop many more skills to make sure these young people are competitive in the innovation economy.



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