Digital Storytelling Project Announces First Five Videos

Oct 7, 2016

This summer, five exceptional high school students from diverse backgrounds and four different states (California, Maryland, Ohio and Washington, D.C.) who wanted to learn about the Japanese American experience and history during World War II tapped into their creativity and produced the first five videos of the National Japanese American Memorial Foundation’s Digital Storytelling Project.

The students each researched one internment camp, conducted interviews with former incarcerees and their families and then came to the Heart Mountain Pilgrimage — held at the original site of the Heart Mountain Relocation Center, which incarcerated more than 14,000 Japanese Americans and their families during WWII — to learn how to produce these videos or “digital stories.” The videos — featuring Amache, Heart Mountain, Manzanar, Poston and Topaz — can be found at the NJAMF website (

The Digital Storytelling Project is a seed project of the foundation that is meant to inspire a young generation to engage in civil rights, the study of the Constitution and America’s checkered history.

The student creators of the five videos are Carolyn Hoover from Maryland (Topaz), Reed Leventis from Maryland (Poston), Julia Shin from Ohio (Manzanar), Halle Sousa from California (Amache) and Connor Yu from Washington, D.C. (Heart Mountain).

The NJAMF called for applications from high school students around the country with the goal of choosing 10 students — one for each major incarceration camp in the mainland U.S. — to learn how to develop, write, research and, ultimately, produce a short video.

Read more at the Pacific Citizen.

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