Lake Charles high schoolers win C-SPAN competition with hurricane documentary

The three students expressed their experience during the 2020 hurricanes in Lake Charles.
The three students expressed their experience during the 2020 hurricanes in Lake Charles.
Published: May. 3, 2022 at 6:07 PM CDT|Updated: May. 3, 2022 at 7:02 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Three Lake Charles students won first prize for a documentary about their experience during the storms in the C-SPAN competition.

The trio are the only winners from Louisiana and beat out 18 other states in their division.

In a six-minute documentary, Shontenaisha Manuel, Jason Boudreaux and Jaleaha Joseph explained how the 2020 storms changed their lives.

“Everyone that I talked to, that got damage to their homes with their land and stuff, you could see how sad they were, and I felt like it was up to me to get the word out that these people still needed help,” Documentary Student Jason Boudreaux said.

The students discussed FEMA, the ups and downs of recovery, and struggles that echoed throughout the region.

Judges said their ability to take on a federal agency and tell personal stories stood out.

Television Production Instructor Britney Glaser said the group worked for four months on the project:

“Every week from September until January they carved away at setting up interviews, doing research, capturing more footage and editing it together,” Glaser said.

Hard work pays off, their first prize win earned them $3000 and iPads.

“I’m really excited, it’s been really fun and surreal,” Manuel said.

They hope their documentary helps people, just as they continue to succeed despite the hardships mother nature has dealt.

“I’ll tell them to breathe in and out because it’s gonna be hard, but in the end, I know they all can make it, because if I can you can,” Joseph said.

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