college television awards

The winners of the 43rd College Television Awards presented by the Television Academy Foundation at the Saban Media Center on Saturday, April 13, 2024, in North Hollywood, CA.

April 15, 2024
Foundation News

Embracing Emerging Talent at the 43rd College Television Awards

Considered the nation's top competition for college and university television students and recent graduates, the Academy Foundation's event has served as a springboard to industry success.

Passion. Vision. Creativity. Those were the themes of the evening at the Television Academy Foundation's 43rd College Television Awards ceremony, evidenced in scenes from the nominated and winning programs and cited by the filmmakers in their acceptance speeches. As Academy and Foundation president and CEO Maury McIntyre noted in his welcome, "Television is a dynamic medium, one that requires a constant influx of new perspectives, stories and passion — something our nominees this evening have in abundance."

Consider Giorgio Ghiotto. The Italian writer-producer-director won not only in the Nonfiction Series category for his New York University master's thesis documentary Wings of Dust, but also took the evening's top honor, the Seymour Bricker Humanitarian Award, which recognizes the nominated piece that best reflects a humanitarian issue. The film chronicles the efforts of Quechua Indigenous journalist Vidal Merma to report on and fight the aggressive mineral mining that has turned rivers to dust and contaminated other water in the province of Espinar, Peru.

"Thank you so much for this opportunity," Ghiotto said, accepting his Nonfiction win. "Opportunity is something that all of us need. We're young filmmakers, young creators. We have a mission; we have a drive to make an impact in this world. But there are a lot of challenges we have. We're feeling lost sometimes. So, opportunities like this one make us really believe in what we can give to this world."

Ghiotto's work was one of 181 submissions from 37 schools this year; the program is considered the nation's top competition for college and university television students and recent graduates. The winning entry in each of seven competitive categories — Animation Series; Comedy Series; Commercial, PSA or Promo; Drama Series; News and Sports in addition to Nonfiction Series — received $3,000.

The Bricker Humanitarian Award bestowed $4,000, and the Loreen Arbus Focus on Disability Scholarship, recognizing a work that spotlights disability issues, awarded $10,000. The ceremony, held April 13 at the Academy's Saban Media Center in the NoHo Arts District, was preceded by two days of nominee professional development events.

Disability scholarship winner Halle Losordo, writer-director of the documentary Just Jacob, profiled her best friend, Jacob Thiele, who has the facial condition Treacher Collins Syndrome; Losordo, co-winning producer Abigail Dickinson and Thiele are recent Savannah College of Art and Design graduates.

"Jacob has always said, 'Live life to the fullest,'" Losardo said after the ceremony. "I hope that [the film] has raised awareness for other people with disabilities, to basically have a voice and a platform to get their story out there."

Awards sponsors were the Loreen Arbus Foundation, the Johnny Carson Foundation, People magazine and United Airlines.

Watch the event replay and see complete winners list here.

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