Running for Hope wins Best Doc

Published: May 01, 2019 | Author: Lyndsey Nelson | Read Time: 2 minutes

"running for hope" short film crewAs the school year comes to a close, Southern Utah University students’ short film “Running for Hope” adds Best Short Documentary at the Utah Film Festival to its ever-growing list of awards.

“Running for Hope” is a short documentary covering the Grand to Grand Ultra endurance race, which consisted of six stages, taking runners from over 22 different countries across a distance of 170 miles.

The documentary premiered on campus in December of 2018 and has since been entered into 12 film festivals and competitions, some of which are yet to announce award winners. So far, the short film has won Audience Choice Short Documentary at the LDS Film Festival and Best Short Documentary at the Utah Film Festival and screened at the Kanab Film Festival in April.

President Scott L. Wyatt ran the Grand to Grand Ultra in September of 2018 as an effort to raise money for the Sorenson Legacy Foundation Center for Hope. The Foundation aims to offer assistance to those students by giving them a high-quality facility with on-campus child care and family support.

The documentary follows President Wyatt’s journey through each stage of the race, as well as documenting the difficulties faced by the 10% of SUU students who identify themselves as parents with children.

The Grand to Grand Ultra served as an opportunity for President Wyatt and the rest of his team to not only fundraise for the new facility but raise awareness for those students struggling to balance classes and parenthood. Wyatt, alongside professors William Heyborne and Johnny Oh, placed first in the team division.

“‘Running for Hope’ has been such an incredible experience,” said Emma Sorensen, one of the students who helped direct and produce the short film. “It has been amazing watching this project grow into a success. I have learned so much from the production of the film, as well as attending film award ceremonies. This experience at SUU has grown my love and prepared me to someday fully dive into the film industry.”

Professor of Communications Jon Smith, who oversaw the production of the “Running for Hope”, has said of the success it has seen, “We are excited to receive the recognition for the hard work in covering the Grand to Grand Ultra endurance race.”

“Running for Hope” is available for viewing on YouTube, and will continue to show in film festivals and competitions throughout the year.

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