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CDS Instructors Sims and Rue Help Create “Inspired by Nature,” a Video Project Featured in the iPad Issue of “National Geographic Kids”

Christopher Sims and Elena Rue, both instructors at the Center for Documentary Studies, were commissioned by the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation to collect audio and video material for a collaborative storytelling project that aimed to capture stories about our connection with nature, and how we are inspired and transformed by this connection. The first short video created by the project, directed by Sims, and entitled Inspired by Nature, is currently featured across numerous multimedia platforms:

• in the October 2013 iPad issue of National Geographic Kids magazine and in National Geographic Kids “News Bites”

• at the August 25th National Park Service Anniversary Celebration in Washington, D.C.

• in high school assemblies and class presentations from Connecticut to Colorado

• on the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation’s website and social media platforms

• on numerous Facebook pages, including the National Park Service and National Park Foundation

Both Sims and Rue recorded video and audio for the piece. Sims was the video’s director and co-edited the piece with Paula Ehrlich, the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation’s President and CEO, who also served as the executive producer of the piece.

At CDS, Sims is the Web Production Director and a Lecturing Fellow in the Documentary Arts and Rue is the Program Director of the Lewis Hine Documentary Fellows Program and an instructor in the undergraduate and continuing education programs.

More about Inspired by Nature:

In May 2013, students from all over the country came to Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve near New Orleans, Louisiana, for a National Park Service/National Geographic BioBlitz. Together, they developed a sense of awe about the natural world as they worked together with volunteer scientists, teachers, and other community members to find and identify as many species of plants, animals, microbes, fungi, and other organisms as possible within the 24-hour event.

Edward O. Wilson has said, “There is no greater high than discovery.” The E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation’s collaborative storytelling project, Inspired by Nature, aimed to capture the moment of personal discovery and transformation that occurs as young people connect with the natural world at BioBlitz. As the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation works to foster a new generation of enthusiastic explorers and informed citizens, they hope these stories will inspire and connect audiences all around the importance of environmental conservation and biodiversity.

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