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Film students participate in virtual discussion with industry pro

Film students participate in virtual discussion with industry pro

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Students enrolled in Lycoming College’s Film and Video Production class had the opportunity this fall to learn from and network with film industry professional, Cecilia Alvarenga. Film and video arts courses introduce students to digital filmmaking and cover topics such as the principles, techniques, and fundamentals of filmmaking including script writing, pre-production, production, and post-production. The virtual meeting with Alvarenga helped to put into context some of what FVA classes studied throughout the fall semester.

Alvarenga has found great success in the movies during her 30-year career. As a production coordinator, she has worked with industry greats, including Terrence Malick, Martin Scorsese, and Francis Ford Coppola, and has movies such as “Ocean’s Twelve,” “Gangs of New York,” and "The Passion of the Christ” to her credit.

“It was an exhilarating experience for our students to speak with Cecilia. She was insightful and gave great advice to our students about things to consider when entering the film industry. Her experience is impressive and we felt fortunate that she was willing to spend valuable time talking with students in film and video arts classes while she is in Rome working on a Netflix film and fresh off of Terrance Malick’s latest film (currently in post-production),” said Leah Bedrosian Peterson, professor of film and video arts. "The pandemic presented some challenges, but I’m pleased we were able to pivot to continue providing these invaluable learning opportunities for students. During a normal semester, a person like Cecilia would likely not be able to visit in person, so in a way, virtual meetings have broadened our opportunity to connect with successful industry professionals such as herself. It was an eye-opening thrill to talk with her!”

"Speaking with Cecilia Alvarenga gave me great insight on the work ethic expected from me in the industry,” said film and video arts major Julissa Aguilar ’22. “She not only had a lot of insight from working as a production coordinator in multiple Hollywood films, but she gave us amazing advice regarding what steps we should be taking now as college students."

The film and video arts department at Lycoming College balances film production and postproduction with film theory as students study and create films that represent humanity, culture, and society. More information is available at

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