Office of International Development

A Division of the Office of the Vice President for International Affairs

Beyond Borders: A Workshop on Filmmaking Across the Punjab Region

With support from the U.S. Embassy, “Beyond Borders: A Workshop of Filmmaking across the Punjab Region” will bring together 30 participants, 15 each from India and Pakistan Punjab region, to work together on conceptualizing, writing, and producing short films during a three-week visit May 12th-June 4th, 2017 to Bloomington, Indiana, U.S.A. Participants will be engaged in American life through field trips and visit communities around the state of Indiana, learning about the diversity within America but also learning about each other in the process. The workshop is designed to develop filmmaking skills (camera and editing) and engage participants in making their own short films in small mixed groups of Indian/Pakistani members. In this collaborative exploration, there is the potential for participants to discover common ground to bridge a cultural and political foundation of understanding that will have lasting impact in the Punjab region upon their return.

Eligibility: To participate in the “Beyond Borders: A workshop on Filmmaking across the Punjab Region” applicants must be:

  1. 22-30 years of age as of May 1, 2017.
  2. Proficient in the English language in all categories: written, spoken, and listening comprehension.
  3. Resident of the Punjab region in India or Pakistan.
  4. Interested in making a commitment to public service and volunteerism (activities related to community and societal issues).
  5. Interested in storytelling, filmmaking or other social media to influence society and advance multicultural dialogue. Experience with filmmaking not required.
  6. Able to demonstrate leadership experience and self-motivation, with a willingness to learn new methods for leading a project for an impact in their communities.
  7. Able to express commitment to return to the Punjab region and contribute to cross-cultural understanding and the stability and growth of the region.

Application requirements: Candidates are required to complete the Online Application form and attach the following documents with their application. All entries must be in English. Application deadline has been extended to January 30th, 2017. (Applications will now be reviewed on a rolling basis in the order they are received until all scholarships are given.)

  1. Two reference letters (in English) that can address the applicant’s suitability for the project – from a teacher, employer or professional colleague.
  2. Curriculum Vitae/Resume – no more than 2 pages.
  3. Upload a ONE MINUTE short video to any online format available (,, etc.) introducing yourself. The video should be produced through any means available (cell phone, camera, etc.). Videos that exceed 60 seconds will be disqualified. Please make a video on ONLY ONE of the following themes/topics.
    1. Please describe, in a 60-second story format, the single most important experience that motivates your interest in this program.
    2. Please convince someone, in a 60-second story format, to move toyour hometown.
    3. Please share, in a 60-second story format, something about your role in the community as a young leader.
  4. Submit TWO short essay statements addressing TWO of the following themes/topics:
    1. Please tell us where you hope to be,and what you hope to be doing, in three to five years.
    2. Please explain how you would contribute toward promoting mutual understanding and collaboration between peoples of the Punjab region, both in India and Pakistan.
    3. Please briefly describe why you are interested in learning more about film and/or media.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

– How many videos are we supposed to submit and what is the format of this video?
In ONE 60-minute short video please spend the time introducing yourself while covering one of the topics requested in the application. Please choose the format that best suits your needs, it may be a voice over or in a “selfie” mode.

– Is this a fully funded program?
All of the expenses related to this program once a candidate is chosen; domestic and international travel, visa, lodging, meals and accommodation will be fully paid or reimbursed.

– Are there requirements for who should write the letters of recommendation?
We recommend having both academic and professional recommendations. As this is a professional development program we highly recommend having at least one professional recommendation.

– Is there any word limit to the essays that we have to write?
There are no limits in the number of words in the essay however please keep your essay to one page or less.

– When are applicants notified about admissions decisions?
We plan to send out final admission decisions by the end of February. “Rolling basis” means that applications will be reviewed in the order they are received and a decision will be made on each application. The final deadline is now January 30, but the sooner you get your application in the better chance you have of being selected. Once all scholarships are filled, we will take down the application, so we encourage you to apply while you can.

– If I do not have extensive experience working in the field of filmmaking, or studying media, can I still apply to the program?
There is NO requirement to have experience in filmmaking or media, we look at the overall application when making admissions decisions and for candidates that demonstrate excellence in all areas.

– If I am older than 30 or younger than 22 may I still apply?
Currently this program is for those who will be between the ages of 22-30 as of May 1, 2017. Please send us a note if you feel there are special circumstances we should consider in regards to your age (especially if you are outside of this range).

– Will I be notified of any missing application materials?
You are responsible for ensuring that your application is submitted with all the required components. Applicants may email at (no phone calls please) to determine which materials have been received in support of the application. However, The Office of International Development does not inform applicants of missing materials.