Student & Emerging Filmmaker Competition


The March on Washington Film Festival is pleased to continue its short film competition to elevate emerging and student filmmakers. Our panel of esteemed judges will review both narrative and documentary short films that focus on civil rights movements, the civil rights era and social justice issues. For 2018 filmmakers are asked to focus on the following topic: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants.  

All shortlisted films will be recognized and screened during the March on Washington Film Festival in July with a one Grand Prize awarded in each of the four sections. 

Previous Winners

Student Narrative
LAWMAN, directed by Matthew Gentile set in 1875, Oklahoma Territory | SPECIAL MENTION
Vitiligo, directed by Cliff Notez | GRAND PRIZE WINNER
Time is the Longest Distance, directed by Bryan Powers

Student Documentary
A Life Before This, directed by Steffie van Rhee | SPECIAL MENTION
Unheard, directed by Erin Kokdil
FEARLESS, directed by Jasmine Cannon, Branden Hampton, and Yingxu Hao | GRAND PRIZE WINNER

Emerging Documentary
They Took Them Alive, directed by Emily Pederson | GRAND PRIZE WINNER
Honk: A Festival of Activist Street Bands, directed by Patrick Johnson
Seven Dates With Death, directed by Mike Holland | SPECIAL MENTION

Emerging Narrative
LA OPOSICION, directed by Zoey Martinson | GRAND PRIZE WINNER
Heterodox HDS, directed by Michaux Muanda
Honor Council, directed by Scott Simonsen | SPECIAL MENTION



Student Journalists Fellowship


The Student Journalists Fellowship is an initiative of the March on Washington Film Festival that provides an opportunity for five college-level journalists to learn about the essential role that reporters have in shaping and preserving Civil Rights in a society, while giving them a chance to step into that role themselves. 

The fellows will receive in-depth training on social justice reporting through a series of workshops and professional development sessions, resulting in a final media project on a Civil Rights topic that the country is faced with today. Students will have the opportunity to pitch their final projects to media outlets around the country. Each fellow will also earn a cash stipend. 

The March on Washington Film Festival is proud to invest in the future of journalism and these young journalists. 

2017 Student Journalists

Riddhi Sarkar, American University, Class of 2019
'Project Awareness' looks back at 1961 debate between Malcolm X and Bayard Rustin |Michigan Chronicle
Doc Explores how a Quiet Revolution in Baton Rogue Changed History |NBCBLK

Michael Layer, Goucher College, Class of 2017
Documentary explores how a group of black intellectuals found solace in Paris | The Undefeated

Katherine Gilyard, Howard University
9th Wonder Talks 'The Hip Hop Fellow' at the March on Washington Film Festival | Vibe Magainze

Courtney Bublé, George Washington University, Class of 2018
Rust College and College Activism | The South Reporter