Student Documentary Contest

Student Documentary Contest

BendBroadband/C-SPAN Challenge Students to Compete in National Documentary Contest

This Year’s Theme: Message to the President

Deadline is Jan. 18 for Ninth Annual Video Competition

*** $50,000 in prizes to be awarded ***

BendBroadband and C-SPAN want students to consider what issue the president should address in 2013, and create a video documentary explaining why it is important.

In partnership with BendBroadband, C-SPAN is calling for entries in its 2013 StudentCam competition. Now in its ninth year, C-SPAN’s national contest invites all middle school students (grades 6-8) and high school students (grades 9-12) to produce a five- to eight-minute video documentary using C-SPAN programming.

This year, students will have the opportunity to produce a documentary that focuses on “A Message to the President: What’s the most important issue the president should consider in 2013?”

The C-SPAN Education Foundation supports the contest by awarding 75 student and 11 teacher awards, totaling $50,000 in cash prizes. The Grand Prize winner with the best overall entry will be awarded $5,000, with multiple cash prize awards of $250, $500, $750, $1,500, and $3,000 to students in both middle and high school categories.

“StudentCam gives young people the chance to share their opinions with C-SPAN’s national viewing audience,” says C-SPAN Vice President of Education Joanne Wheeler. This year’s theme allows students to explore a topic they feel is most important for the president to address and to consider possible solutions.”

Competition Guidelines 

Entries must represent varying points of view, and include C-SPAN video that supports the documentary’s topic. Students, working alone or in groups of up to three, can upload their entry form and videos directly online at Documentaries must be the original work of students; however teachers may provide guidance and critiques.

The documentaries will be judged by a panel of C-SPAN representatives and educators, and evaluated on a number of criteria, including the thoughtful examination of the competition’s theme, quality of expression, adherence to the time limit, inclusion of varying points of view, and use of C-SPAN programming.

The deadline for entries is Friday, January 18, 2013. Winners will be announced in March 2013, with the top 27 winning videos to air on C-SPAN in April 2013. Complete competition details and the entry form are available at the competition’s website, In addition to cash prizes, past winners have had their documentaries recognized by the White House.

About C-SPAN Classroom 

StudentCam ( is sponsored by C-SPAN Classroom,  a free membership service dedicated to support educators’ use of C-SPAN programming in their classes or for research. Members of C-SPAN Classroom may access free Timely Teachable Videos and video clips for use in the classroom, as well as lesson plans, handouts, and ways to connect with other C-SPAN Classroom members. C-SPAN Classroom has reached more than one million students since its inception in 1987.

About C-SPAN

Created by the cable TV industry and now in over 100 million TV households, C-SPAN programs three public affairs television networks in both SD and HD; C-SPAN Radio, heard in Washington, DC, at 90.1 FM, nationwide via XM Satellite Radio Channel 119, and via the C-SPAN Radio app for iPhone, Android, and Blackberry users; and a video-rich website which hosts the C-SPAN Video Library. Visit or follow us on Facebook and on Twitter @cspan.

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