A unique inter-disciplinary educational project bridging Art, Science and Storytelling funded in part by the National Science Foundation.

There is an urgent need to improve science communication to the general public. Too often research narratives fail to illustrate the excitement, challenges and passion required to explore the planet. As such, the Rutgers University Film Bureau is partnering with the Rutgers Institute for Marine and Coastal Sciences to create a multi-tiered documentary film project featuring the transformative science of the National Science Foundation’s Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) Project at Palmer in the West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP).

Antarctica: Beyond the Ice” documentary project, directed by Dena Seidel, combines innovative science, dramatic imagery and a decade of scientific collaboration into a compelling character driven narrative.

With a broad outreach strategy, the Rutgers Film Bureau will produce a compelling science story of the LTER at Palmer scientists in their quest to understand the impact of climate change on the Western Antarctic Peninsula. The media outreach products, intended for a large and diverse audience, will include the following:

  1. 52-minute film for television broadcast.
  2. Three 5-minute Educational Media versions intended for classrooms, and web-based learning.
  3. An online “Beyond the Ice community” created through interactive and interconnected social media including enhanced blogs highlighting specific research team findings and interactive classrooms as well as interactive conversations with scientists and collaborative science stories posted by students.

This documentary project will directly engage undergraduates in the pre- and post-Antarctica shoots as well as in the editing process. The Rutgers Film Bureau provides hands-on learning experiences for students to craft and shape important science stories for the screen and to collaborate with scientists working to solve problems in the environment and society. Our exciting teaching model offers students the opportunity to learn science while they develop professional skills as science communicators.