Community Productions

Nonprofit Community Partners

My students have made dozens of programs with nonprofit organizations. Dance, theatre, public health, foster care, senior services, and disability are among the topics we’ve addressed. These videos are used for outreach, fundraising and recruitment.

North County Lifeline, LGBT Center, A Reason to Survive, WiLDCOAST, Ensemble Camarada.

Security on Campus, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center Foundation, Class Act, SDSU Physical Plant, The Salvation Army

Museum of Photographic Arts, Torrey Pines State Park, Bayside Community Center, Diversionary Theatre, Surfrider Foundation.

Survivors of Torture International, Community Resource Center, San Diego Museum of Art, Epicentre, San Diego County Tuberculosis Control, Accíon San Diego, Scripps Ranch Theater, Northwest Electro-Acoustic Music Organization, Border Voices, Partners with Industry, Edifice.

Meals-On-Wheels, Walden Family Services, Jewish Family Services, Eveoke Dance Theater, Partners Mentorship Program, Bonita Equestrian Therapy for the Handicapped, Surfrider Foundation, Children’s Museum San Diego (Museo de los Niños), Hate Crimes Victim Assistance Program, Environmental Health Coalition.

Elder Help, Museum of Man, Blues in the Schools, San Diego Californians 4 Youth, Eveoke Dance Theater.


PDF Guidelines for Video Service Learning Projects

Also see Advocacy Story Telling

This is an intermediate video production course. This collaborative effort provides hands-on experience particularly in the development of documentary filmmaking skills. Field — rather than studio — production is encouraged. The most effective videos tell personal stories which engage viewers emotionally. The challenge for both Client and Student Producers is to deliver essential information in a way that is both informative and affecting.


This production is designed to meet your needs for a video production. We want to create a five to ten minute program that effectively represents your program. Video production is a collaborative, time-consuming, intense, sometimes tedious process. What makes a good production possible is thorough planning and pre-production, clear communication and a spirit of cooperation.

A Community Partner has some very important responsibilities:
The first is as a content expert. You know your program and your communication needs best. The students will work with you to develop a video approach that translates your ideas into effective video.

You have to identify your audience. Who is the most likely audience for the program? What do they know? What do they need to know? What will motivate and involve them? What do you want your audience to know? To do? After viewing the video.

As the Client Producer you are the first and last Point of Contact for the students. Video production is very much a linear process. Each decision builds on the previous one. You need to be able to give a definitive answer regarding script, shooting and editing approvals.

The success of the production depends upon the enthusiastic participation of your staff, clients and volunteers. You need to ensure that everyone involved appreciates the importance of the project. Practically this means coordinating logistics: shooting times and locations. It will also be important — especially when videotaping minors — that a signed release is obtained. (Student Producers can provide a master form for duplicating.)

You will work closely with students to:

  • Develop a Script.
  • Design a Shooting Schedule.
  • Obtain the rights to use any Stock Footage — pre-existing video materials — you may wish to incorporate in the production.
  • Write the Narration (if required) and Designate the Narrator.
  • Obtain original (copyright free) Music.
  • Edit the final program. This includes overseeing and approving the Titles and Credits.

At the end of the production process Clients will be asked to complete and return an evaluation form. This feedback will help improve the service learning program.


Completing the project to the client’s satisfaction and within the limits of the semester are the highest priorities for the class. Students will work in a three person team. One student should be designated primary Client Liaison. This student will coordinate communication between and among the client, the talent, and the crew.

Students are expected to bring a high level of professionalism and creativity to their work. Their responsibilities include:

Studying and researching the mission and message of the Client’s community-based organization. This means conducting informational interviews and consulting written materials that may be available. It may also include identifying and considering previously produced videos that can serve as models and/or warnings for the development of the current project.

Collaboratively creating a script that communicates visually and emotionally. Confirming and coordinating the logistics of shooting including obtaining the necessary equipment and supplies.

Creating and implementing a shooting script and schedule which calls for the completion of taping no later than the 11th week of the semester.

Students must obtain Client feedback and suggestions before the project is completed. Client approval of the final edited project is also required.

Students will provide the following materials to their clients:

  • Original digital files
  • Digital Edited Master
  • Copies of all logs, transcripts and signed releases
  • Student will return any research materials and/or stock footage masters to the client. Students will also complete a Client Evaluation Form.

Executive Producer and Instructor
My role is to facilitate the process of production. I am available to students and clients to assist with communication, offer suggestions as requested, provide technical support, and offer constructive criticism as part of the instructional process. Clients and students should feel free to contact me — sooner rather than later. In many ways video production is a process of problem solving. The sooner potential difficulties are identified the better.

Your efforts in making this service-learning program a success are very much appreciated.

The nonprofit community partner retains copyright to the program. It is agreed however that students and the Television, Film and New Media program at SDSU may exhibit the work in festivals, on television and in other appropriate venues which may also include conferences, web streaming and other exhibition opportunities.

A memo of understanding (mou) will confirm this.

SDSU Center for Community Based Service-Learning