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Investigative Documentary Workshop

Starts July 29

All good stories start with a driving question. Good reporters, editors, and documentary filmmakers start with that to produce some of the most compelling content. Students in this daylong workshop will learn the basics of good non-narrative storytelling and journalism. You’ll learn how to write and ask good questions, how to script and plan for a location shoot, and basic editing principles. Our work will culminate in a three- to five-minute short documentary.

Our piece will focus on the Minneapolis mayoral race. Currently, there are nine candidates in the race, including incumbent Mayor Betsy Hodges. The current administration is under intense scrutiny over police policies and practices and Minneapolis is one of the fastest growing cities. It’s praised for its diverse economy, skilled workforce, and livability. But some folks are feeling left behind and squeezed out by rising rents and stagnant wages. Can the next mayor of one of Minnesota’s largest cities change that? We’ll attempt to find out.

In preparation, we’ll watch some examples of well-made short documentaries from New York Times Op-Docs series, Vice TV, and others. We’ll also do some story mapping exercises and work on creating an effective question that will drive our story.

Tuition: $100 regular/$50 low-income

AllisonAllison Herrera has a broad background in youth media. She has served as IFP MN’s Youth Program Director and taught youth workshops for Saint Paul Neighborhood Network and Intermedia Arts. Allison has been a reporter and producer for AMPERS, an association of 15 independent community radio stations in Minnesota, and has worked as a freelance video producer. She currently works for Public Radio International as a reporter and social media editor.

Class Registration Guidelines & Cancellation Policy

  • Space is assigned on a first-come basis. Registrations must include payment in full to be valid. Registrations are accepted beyond registration deadlines as long as space is available.
  • If minimum enrollment has not been reached by 5 days prior to the start date of a class, IFP MN may cancel it, in which case registrants will immediately be notified and receive a full refund by PayPal or charge card credit (for phone or in person credit card registrations) within 5 business days. A check will be issued for registrations that were paid in cash. In lieu of a refund, students have the option of applying their tuition to another course if scheduled in the same calendar year.
    For those wishing to cancel a registration prior to the class registration deadline, 100% of the tuition will be refunded minus a $25 administrative fee. For registration cancellations received after the registration deadline but prior to the first class session, 50% of the tuition will be refunded minus a $25 administrative fee. As of the day of class, no refunds or credits/exchanges will be given.


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July 29
9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Event Category:


Allison Herrera
Registration Deadline
July 24, 2017
Maximum Enrollment
Civi Event ID