How are you feeling about the world today? Many would say, not great.

Film and TV are unique in their ability to build new worlds that seem familiar, and yet, new all at once; this makes them the perfect tool to enact narrative and cultural change. To sway “not great” to “I’m hopeful for the future.”

Socially conscious narratives kick-start the visualization of the impact of our actions, mobilize communities to stand up for what they believe in, and inspire youth to become leaders of their generation. 

Moreso, good storytelling in film and TV can help dismantle destructive “us versus them” dynamics.

Rachel Cooke, One Community’s Senior Director of Impact, delivered a lecture to the virtual international delegation of the National Youth Science Camp (NYSCamp) on the social impact present in the media. Importantly, she highlighted how scientists and healthcare professionals can have a greater impact if they learn communication using many of the same tools used by Hollywood. One Community is a film and television co-financing company that harnesses the power of storytelling to inspire and encourage positive change in the world.

Cooke provided insight to this year’s delegation.

“So many of you here are looking to go into high impact STEM careers; invent the next engine, cure diseases, create novel energy sources. These are huge, important advancements for society. But understanding how to communicate is critical.  How do you tell people that these things matter? How do you tell them how your work matters?”  

Throughout the course of the lecture Cooke educated delegates on the power of storytelling. Facts and plain language explanations alone are often not enough to curb misinformation and develop excitement and support for life-changing innovations. Instead, if scientists can communicate the human element of the problems they are solving, and in doing so create emotional resonance, they have a better chance at delivering lasting education and motivating public support.  

Speaking to her experience with the NYSCamp, Cooke said, “Any resource that inspires young people to reach higher is important. These young people in particular have a ton on their shoulders – they need something like this to build a community, connect, and help tell their unique stories.”

About the National Youth Science Camp:  Hosted in Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia since 1963, the National Youth Science Camp (NYSCamp) is a residential science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) program designed to honor and challenge some of the nation’s rising leaders and provide them with opportunities to engage with STEM professionals and participate in exciting outdoor activities. Typically, two delegates are selected to attend camp from each state and the District of Columbia. In partnership with the U.S. State Department, we also host international delegates. Past countries represented include Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Germany, Japan, Mexico, and Trinidad and Tobago. Housing, meals, transportation, and supplies are provided to participants at no cost. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, now for the 3rd consecutive year, the 2022 National Youth Science Camp (NYSCamp) is an entirely virtual experience. 

About One Community: One Community is a film and television co-financing company that harnesses the power of storytelling to inspire and encourage positive change in the world.