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TOPIC: Education

Enter to Win a Copy of the Book “This Is What a Hero Looks Like”

Need something beautiful for your eyes and nourishing for your soul?  This is What a Hero Looks Like is a companion photography book to the award-winning documentary, Jim Allison: Breakthrough Enter below for your chance to win a copy. DEADLINE: You have until April 27th at 7:00 pm PT. The documentary Jim Allison: Breakthrough premieres … READ MORE

Meet the Mavericks of Science and Medicine

by Heather Archuletta In 1847, Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis proposed a simple tactic: wash your hands. It’s difficult to imagine this as a medical “breakthrough,” but the Hungarian physician noted that when hand-washing was constant, contagion quickly and measurably plummeted. He experimented with antiseptic solutions, mistakenly assuming his idea would be embraced because it would save … READ MORE

Filmmaker Asks New Yorkers, What Does the Future Look Like?

Toronto-based filmmaker Brett Story, whose previous film The Prison in Twelve Landscapes aired on Independent Lens in 2017, holds a PhD in geography and her unconventional storytelling style reflects both a geographer’s exploring eye and a listener’s empathetic ear. She approaches the interviews in The Hottest August as a way to learn from people and … READ MORE

A Flood of Myths and Stories

By Lennlee Keep We Believe in Dinosaurs is an exploration of the scientific and historical veracity of the Bible and the construction of an authentic likeness of Noah’s Ark in Williamstown, Kentucky.  Known as “The Ark Encounter,” this theme park explores the Judeo-Christian story of the wrath of God, a great flood, and the repopulation … READ MORE

Religion, Science and Belief: Unearthing the Thorny Intersection

Filmmakers Monica Long Ross and Clayton Brown have long been fascinated by how science and culture mix–or don’t mix–in America. In short, that relationship is complicated.  They directed and produced the award-winning documentaries The Atom Smashers (which aired on Independent Lens), which was about the search for the Higgs boson particle, and The Believers, the … READ MORE

Space Scientists of Color, and the “Afronauts”

What drives humankind to explore? There are several factors that can embolden a person to “seek out new civilizations” or “boldly go where no one has gone before,” to borrow from Star Trek’s famous opener. History has taught us that famine, war, strife, and persecution can drive people away from their home country, yet positive things like opportunity or hope for a better life can draw us towards the unknown. READ MORE

Women of the Space Agency: Once Forbidden, No Longer Hidden

In July of 1999, on Apollo 11’s 30th anniversary, at a Kennedy Space Center press conference, NASA astronaut and first moonwalker Neil Armstrong lamented, “School children used to say, ‘We are reading about you in science class.’ Now they say, ‘We are reading about you in history class.’”  READ MORE

Filmmakers Capture Young Men Wrestling to Succeed and Be Seen

The story of four members of the high school wrestling team at Huntsville’s J.O. Johnson High School–a longstanding entry on Alabama’s list of failing schools–and their tough-love coach coming to terms with his own past, Wrestle is “superb,” wrote Kenneth Turan in the LA Times. “Just as sports mirror society, so do the best sports films not only take us inside games and those who play them but also provide insight into our world and how it works.” He rightly adds, “One reason Wrestle is so effective is that [the directors] and cinematographer Sinisa Kukic made the decision to move to Huntsville for the duration of the shoot. What resulted was not only 650 hours of footage but the benefit of countless additional time spent just hanging out with the protagonists.”

Herbert and co-director Belfer spoke to us about how they came to make this film and that decision to move to Alabama for a long while, as well as how the kids are doing today.  READ MORE

High School Coaches Wear Many Hats to Make an Impact

Driving kids home from practice, taking them to visit colleges, running and lifting weights with them out of season, answering the phone in the middle of the night when something has gone wrong — these are just a few of the many roles sports coaches take on for their players. The player/coach relationship can be special, as seen in the film Wrestle, it can be a chance for young people to connect with a mentor who knows them individually and pushes them through their struggles. READ MORE