Exploring the Intersection of Film and Education: UP Visayas Launches Innovative Workshop Series

By Julie Prescott

Last March 8th and 9th, 2024, the Division of Humanities, College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), initiated an interdisciplinary film workshop titled “Film as Pedagogy” at the MILC, CAS, Miagao campus, and the UPV Cinematheque, Iloilo. This pioneering event, supported by the Special Project Funding Window of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension, aimed to revolutionize the utilization of film in education and artistic expression.

The event was inaugurated by Chancellor Clement Camposano of UP Visayas, who expressed full support for the initiative, highlighting its potential impact on education within the region as well as the rest of the country through the UP System. Chancellor Camposano’s presence underscored the significance of the initiative, signaling a commitment to promoting innovative approaches to education and artistic expression.

Kicking off the event on March 8th was the captivating workshop, “CINEDAGWAY: UP Visayas Film as Pedagogy and Cinema for Education Forum.” Representatives from state universities across Western Visayas, including the University of Antique (UA), Northern Iloilo State University (NISU), Iloilo Science and Technology University (ISATU – Iloilo and Miagao), and State University of Northerm Negros (SUNN), converged to initiate a year-long film development initiative. This initiative seeks to establish a Western Visayan Film Consortium, uniting various educational institutions to cultivate and promote films inspired by the Film as Pedagogy Framework.

Continuing the momentum on March 9th, the event embraced “Cine-Isko,” inviting various colleges and disciplines from within UPV. Participants (both faculty and students) delved into the art of filmmaking as a potent vehicle for disseminating niche information to the broader public, thereby enhancing understanding and education. The College of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, along with representatives from the College of Arts and Sciences divisions and departments—Humanities, Social Sciences, Biological Sciences, Professional Education (represented by UP High School in Iloilo), and the Department of Physical Education—actively engaged in this enriching exploration.

At the heart of the event was the esteemed presence of Professor Nick Deocampo, a luminary in Filipino cinema. Prof. Deocampo, renowned for his multi-awarded filmmaking, film history scholarship, and advocacy for film literacy, shared invaluable insights throughout the forum and workshop. Emphasizing the concept of “The Third Film Front,” he underscored the crucial role of cinema in education, alongside its traditional domains of entertainment and art.

In addition to Prof. Deocampo’s informative sessions and forum discussions, introductory workshops conducted by Prof. Kevin Piamonte and Prof. Jose Ruel Garcia primed participants for forthcoming summer workshops. These sessions will empower participants to conceptualize, create, and showcase their films in the upcoming annual film festival ‘CinemaTahum’, dedicated to celebrating Western Visayan cinema.

The visionary leadership of Project Director Prof. Kevin Piamonte and Division of Humanities Chair Prof. Jude Vincent Parcon spearheaded this ground-breaking initiative. Their dedication to fostering interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation promises to elevate the role of film in education and artistic expression throughout Western Visayas and beyond.

As the curtains closes on the first leg of this transformative event, the echoes of cinematic exploration and educational empowerment reverberate, signalling a new era of creativity and enlightenment through the lens of film.