(June 21, 2013) -- "Behind Closed Doors: Voices from the Inside," a documentary film created in 2011 by social work graduate students in the UTSA College of Public Policy, has been chosen by the Council on Social Work Education as one of nine official selections in its 2013 Virtual Film Festival.
Through Sept. 6, social work educators nationwide can view the film with their students as an educational resource.
"The main relevance of this documentary for social work instructors is that it provides a transformational learning experience that simply cannot be found in a classroom," said Robert Ambrosino, senior lecturer in the Department of Social Work. "The students are afforded the opportunity to gain knowledge about policy advocacy through a compelling real-life experience."
Each year, tens of thousands of underage girls in the United States are impacted in some way by the horrible reality of domestic minor sex trafficking. In late 2011, graduate students enrolled in Ambrosino' s advanced policy class decided to cast a light on what they perceived to be a too often ignored social issue.
"My advanced policy class chose to highlight the domestic trafficking of minors for their assignment because of how closely it is connected to our community," said Ambrosino. "Interstate 10, which crosses Texas, is a major conduit for human trafficking and runs right through San Antonio."
The UTSA students created a documentary to share compelling and often horrific personal stories of human trafficking victims while dispelling common myths about the subject. Over the course of 10 weeks, the students, with help from the community, took turns filming, producing and editing what ultimately became "Behind Closed Doors: Voices from the Inside," which they premiered at UTSA in August 2011.
"It was extremely difficult to hear the stories of teenage girls, some of whom have been trafficked since they were as young as eight years old, as well as those of adult survivors who have borne long-lasting emotional scars as a result of being trafficked," he said. "But, our students felt it necessary to dispel myths about domestic minor sex trafficking among members of the general community and build upon what was being talked about in the state senate at the time."
To view and discuss the nine films, participants should sign into or register for Google+, go to "Communities," search for "CSWE Film Festivals," click the film festival logo and click "Ask to Join."
Community members will be able to not only view and discuss "Behind Closed Doors: Voices from the Inside" but also complete rating sheets online. The highest rated student film, as determined by the audience rating sheets, will receive the Virtual Ovation Award and a $500 prize.
The community is invited to the inauguration of UTSA President Taylor Eighmy, the sixth president of UTSA.
Convocation Center, Main Campus
The Provost's Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Council hosts this forum to share and further explain the results of the survey and to offer the opportunity for faculty and staff to provide feedback.
Durango Building La Villita Room (DB 1.116), Downtown Campus
For more than 20 years, Josie Méndez-Negrete, a UTSA associate professor in Mexican American Studies, has endured the emotional journey of watching her son, Tito, struggle with schizophrenia. Her powerful account is the first memoir by a Mexican American author to share the devastation and hope a family experiences in dealing with this mental illness.
H-E-B Student Union Travis Room (HSU 2.212), Main Campus
Graduate and undergraduate student researchers pursuing majors in the College of Liberal and Fine Arts will present their original work.
Student Union Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus
March Into Your Major is a major exploration fair intended to provide students with information on selecting their major.
H-E-B Student Union Ballroom (HSU 1.104/1.106), Main Campus
The UTSA community is invited to this town hall meeting to learn more about progress of the Student Success Presidential initiative.
Frio Street Building (FS 1.512), Downtown Campus
Author Annette Angela Portillo will read her book, which examines Native American women’s autobiographical discourses and multiple-voiced life stories that resist generic conventional notions of first-person narrative.
McKinney Humanities Building (MH 3.02.24), Main Campus
Chelsea Wentworth, anthropology professor at High Point University, will discuss women’s roles in changing customary feasting patterns so that feasts can serve as a coping mechanism for children’s food insecurity in urban areas the South Pacific Island nation, Vanuatu.
H-E-B Student Union Travis Room (HSU 2.202), Main Campus
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