Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Volunteer Spotlight: Shuling Yong

Shuling Yong was born and raised on the island nation of Singapore in Southeast Asia. She describes it as “a bustling little city about the size of Chicago,” and since it is near the equator, it feels like summer all year long. Shuling came to the United States three years ago after graduating at the top of her class. She received a scholarship to study anywhere in the world and she chose Northwestern University.

At NU, Shuling majored in Radio/Television/Film. She was inspired to study film after a screening of Terra Incognita by Maria Finitzo. It is a documentary about stem cell research produced by Kartemquin Films. This, coupled with her experience in a class on social entrepreneurship, made her realize she could use her videography skills for social change.

She applied for specific internships in order to tell the mission and history of organizations through video. After an internship in early 2010, Shuling herself now works at Kartemquin Films, on a project due out in 2012 about gender inequality in sports. It is called Invisible Seasons.

Shuling also works with Innovations For Learning, a non-profit organization utilizing technology for early elementary school education. The videos she does for them help showcase the impact of the TeacherMate and their Online Tutoring Program, and how it's been helping students in hundreds of schools learn to read and do math more easily.

Her dream is to direct her own feature length documentary. It will probably be about youth empowerment or an analysis of human behavior. Some of her favorite documentaries, which she recommends, are Food, Inc. and Hoop Dreams. She also wants to start a social issue media firm, like Kartemquin Films, in Singapore where there is currently no such group.

Cabrini Connections came into Shuling’s life via a student consultancy project with campusCATALYST. She met with CC President Daniel Bassill about how the organization can run more efficiently and utilize Mike Trakan’s maps to generate revenue.

Cabrini Connections came back into her life when 2009 Video & Filmmakers Club Leader Michael Alexander invited her to co-teach a class about editing. At the time, she was interning for Michael at his company, Conscious Planet Media. Shuling had a great time with her visit, began attending more regularly, and eventually became one of the club’s co-leaders along with Drew Hall.

Video & Filmmakers Club meets on Mondays from 5:30-7. They work on a big project each quarter which is relevant to life and the industry of film. This summer they made music videos and this fall they will be making spec commercials. Shuling’s favorite part of the club is “the energy the kids give me… I love seeing their happy faces at the end of the quarter when we showcase their work.”

Thank you for your hard work and dedication to Cabrini Connections, Shuling! We appreciate it!

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