In April 2021, a documentary team visited Cedar City, Utah to film a special episode of “The College Tour,” an Amazon series highlighting universities around the nation. The series aimed to provide insight into each institution it visited through the lens of current students.
In the 35-minute feature, 10 students from Southern Utah University told their story, each with unique backgrounds and experiences at the university. From a professional dancer who lives in Los Angeles and takes school online, to an aviation student, to a computer science major to the current student body president, the students wrote their own scripts and shared their stories to show what SUU has to offer.
“The culture of SUU is very much based around the mentality that students come first, our door is always open, and we care about you as a person,” said Tiffany Chin during her feature. “It was exactly what I needed.”
The large-scale production not only had many moving pieces, but the team visited during one of the busiest times on campus — finals week. The documentary team worked with students around the clock. SUU’s Marketing and Communications Office stepped up and helped with everything from pre-production work to filming and multiple re-edits.
Of course, the students themselves had a lot to do that week. Amidst final projects and tests, they withstood freezing weather to film take after take. Sharing their stories on TV turned out to be a very different experience for all of the students.
“Filming was so fun, but it was also very cold that day,” Davi Kauweloa, a nursing student, said. “And I am from Vegas so I grew up wearing flip-flops everywhere and I was still in my flip-flops that day.”
Jordan Simmons, a masters student in the arts administration program on campus, shared that he found being filmed more nerve-wracking than he expected.
“My background being in theatre, I’ve spent time on stage,” Simmons said. “But film is a different experience. I learned a lot.”
Story by McKayla Olsen
Photos from from SUU: The College Tour