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MU Extension workshop offers teens chance to hone video skills, raise awareness of impact of deployment on peers

MU Extension workshop offers teens chance to hone video skills, raise awareness of impact of deployment on peers


COLUMBIA, Mo. – Teens who want to learn about video production should plan to attend 3…2…1 Action! ? a University of Missouri Extension workshop, April 18 through 20, at Whiteman Air Force Base, Knob Noster.

Teens will learn skills to produce public service announcements that describe life as a military kid and what it’s like to have a parent deployed overseas.

"We live in the age of YouTube, so being able to communicate effectively through audiovisual media is becoming a must-have skill," said Bradd Anderson, youth specialist with the MU Extension 4-H Center for Youth Development.

During the workshop, which runs from 5:30 p.m. Friday until noon Sunday, participants learn the basics of video production, as they script, storyboard, film and edit the video into a final product.

The workshop is open to any Missouri teen, age 12-16, interested in technology, multimedia design, writing, acting, performing, set design, lighting and stage production.

Young people with a parent in the National Guard, Reserves or active military are encouraged to participate, though military connections are not required.

"This project will give military kids another way for their voices to be heard and teaches them valuable skills they can take back to their communities," Anderson said.

The workshop is an opportunity for other young people to demonstrate their support for the troops and their families.

Anderson’s colleague, Mary Jo Williams, said military youth issues affect families across Missouri, particularly National Guard and Reserve families who are scattered throughout the state.

More than 850 Missouri children have a parent serving overseas in the military, according to the latest figures from the Missouri National Guard. That number will grow this spring when some 1,000 Missouri Guard members are deployed to Kosovo.

Williams, MU Extension 4-H youth specialist, said: "When family changes like these occur, many of their usual support systems may no longer be adequate. Plus, extensive media coverage of ongoing military operations creates daily anxiety, so these newly military kids frequently have needs that are unique from their peers."

Anderson said, “As the voices of military youth in our communities are heard, the video project becomes a way to strengthen awareness about the needs of military families.”

There is no charge for the workshop; however, registration is required by April 1, and spaces are expected to fill quickly. To register, contact Joan Zeller, 660-747-3193 or