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Video Contest for College Students



NEW YORK, April 1, 2014 – Leticia Smith, a Sociology and Social Work Major at Humboldt State University in Arcata, Cal., took the top prize of $2,000 in The Christophers’ Twenty-Sixth Annual Video Contest for College Students for her video entitled “The Right Way.” Against a backdrop of corresponding pictures and video montages, Smith explains how her inner-city upbringing inspired her to pursue the study of sociology. All of her philanthropic work throughout college, from volunteering at Habitat for Humanity to serving meals at homeless shelters in Arcata, has only strengthened her resolve to give more of herself to others in need.

            “It [my charity work] made me more determined to help troubled youth because I’ve known what it’s like not to have someone help you through life,” Smith concludes. “I plan on opening up an alternative house for troubled youth, where they can come and live if…they live in troubled communities where they can’t get away from the violence. And we’re going to help them graduate from high school and succeed with college, and…we’re going to make it so that they can find jobs and we help find them different things to do with life, the right way.”

            Continuing with the theme of how one person can have a powerful impact on the lives of others, second place winner Daniel Thompson’s video, “Baking a Difference,” centers on a middle-aged Oklahoma volunteer named Betty, who has established a “Birthday Cakes Made with Love” ministry at her church. Now in its third year, this ministry now produces a total of 60 to 70 cakes a year for different foster children. Every single cake is personalized with a particular foster child in mind. While Betty doesn’t personally witness the children’s reactions to the cakes after she drops them off at the Department of Human Services office in Sayre, Okla., participating in this type of work is truly its own reward for her.

Finally, Sean Day, a Digital Film and Movie Production major at The Art Institutes International-Kansas City in Lenexa, Kan., rounds out the third prize in this contest with his film called “Community of One.” This brief but powerful video portrays how people with various talents and from all different walks of life have the capacity to make a difference.

            The Christophers, a non-profit organization founded in 1945 by Maryknoll Father James Keller uses the mass media to encourage individuals to use their God-given abilities to change the world for the better. The Christopher motto, adopted from the ancient Chinese proverb, is: “It’s better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.”



First Prize - Leticia Smith - “The Right Way”


Second Prize - Daniel Thompson -“Baking a Difference”

Third Prize - Sean Day -“Community of One”