The Cook Center Media Workshop is a group of student interns dedicated to using media and storytelling to create social change. Under the direction of documentary filmmaker and Artist in Residence Bruce Orenstein, students direct, edit, and produce videos that highlight issues of social and economic inequality in North Carolina. Orenstein is committed to working in collaboration with community leaders and advocates, and his students have produced videos for the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, Democracy NC, and the North Carolina NAACP. The group embodies the philosophy that showing the human effects of unjust policies is a powerful tool for informing policymaking in the present—and working towards a more equitable future.
Past projects have explored racial inequality in Durham’s school-to-prison pipeline, the challenges facing North Carolina’s low-wage workers, and the impact of the Citizens United Supreme Court decision. These videos have been featured on a multitude of platforms including ABC World News Tonight with Diane Sawyer, UNC Public Radio, the 2013 Summer Retreat of Congressional Democrats, and the 2015 Oral History Association National Conference.