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Film detailing study abroad in France wins award

IES AbroadThe awards ceremony for the IES Abroad Study Abroad Film Festival was held at Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art. Photo: IES Abroad

This year 99 films were submitted for consideration, the highest to date

Chase Devens, a film and media student, and David Smith, who is working towards a double major in marketing and entrepreneurship, received a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize for their work, Le Cinq Mois – The Five Months.

“Each year we are surprised, delighted, and inspired by the storytelling abilities of our students”

The film documents various experiences from their time abroad, such as Devens breaking his foot, losing his phone and witnessing Notre Dame Cathedral on fire.

This year 99 films were submitted for consideration, the highest amount to date.

The entries were narrowed down by a jury to three finalists and the works were then voted for by the public.

“Each year we are surprised, delighted, and inspired by the storytelling abilities of our students, and this year’s films were no exception,” said Amy Ruhter McMillan, senior associate vice president of marketing and the founder of the festival.

“We were thrilled to host our sixth-annual event with these compelling student films– it was a truly inspiring event and we can’t wait to see what next year’s film festival competition brings.”

The other finalists were Kirsten Mossberg of the University of Michigan, who documented study abroad experiences in Dublin, Ireland, and Siyu Zhou of the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the University of South Carolina, who recorded what life was like for a study abroad student in Tokyo, Japan.

“I was captivated and very impressed for the second year in a row by the creative drive and quality of these student films,” said film festival host and renowned film critic, Richard Roeper.

“The storytelling, filming, techniques, and engaging music were incredible and told each of their unique stories in a very authentic way.

“I couldn’t be more impressed, and applaud all of their efforts and hard work they put into these films.”

Sponsors of the sixth edition film festival raised more than $45,000, which will cover scholarships with IES Abroad for 20 students.

You can watch the winning film below:

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