Over the summer, PCTI’s own video production prodigy, Justin Acevedo, took it upon himself to submit an essay explaining why he should be accepted into the WABC-TV’s “Get Reel with Your Dream” program. He was selected along with hundreds of other students, thus gaining the opportunity to meet with top professionals in both film and television. Justin received first hand access to tips of the trade, even going so far as to speak with Jeff Pegues, a reporter of WABC-TV, about the journalistic writing process and what it takes to be in front of the camera.
But that’s not all. While participating in the “Get Reel” program, students were encouraged to submit a self-produced PSA to compete in the Reel Video Awards. Justin’s entry, Vanishing Cries made it into the top ten. All finalists were invited to ABC studios where they previewed the PSA submissions. After a time of reviewing and waiting, Justin Acevedo was awarded first place and took home a $12,000 scholarship for his future educational endeavors.
When asked about the topic of his PSA, Justin mentioned that it was meant to give voice the unfortunate victims who took their own lives as a result of bullying. “I wanted to show that if they could speak…what would they say?” His message is emotionally charged and to-the-point, characteristics which are often found in Justin’s work.
WABC’s own, Sade Baderinwa, presented Justin with a large check, which he humbly accepted.
This isn’t the first time Justin has been awarded for his short films. His anti-bullying campaign won 3rd place in the Passaic County Film Festival. His collaborative work with Jahlil Bennett, a poetry entry named Common Sense, was also a finalist in the Adobe Youth Voices Aspire Awards.
The “Get Reel” program was created by WABC-TV Anchor Sade Baderinwa as a partnership between Disney, the Lincoln Center Institute, and the New York Women in Film & Television.
Congratulations to Justin Acevedo, PCTI’s resident film star! This Bulldog is going to go far!
Photo Caption: Justin Acevedo receives a big check for $12,000 from Sade Baderinwa and the “Get Real with Your Dreams” mentoring program.