AURORA - Before Hafsa Ali ever stepped foot in the Colorado Film School, this 10th grade student knew nothing about the art of movie making. Now, she is working on the final touches of a documentary on Muslim girls living in Colorado.
"I didn't know anything about cameras, pictures. I didn't even know that the thing was just like a real thing," Ali said. "When I came here, I got a better opportunity to learn more about it."
Ali is part of a free Summer Film Camp put on the Community College of Aurora, Colorado Film School, and a group called Downtown Aurora Visual Arts or DAVA.
"It's like a job training program and as part of that, we work with them and they learn to make their own films," Geoffrey Chadwick, associate professor at the Colorado Film School said.
The goal of DAVA is to enrich the community through the arts. They are taking students from elementary to high school to the Colorado Film School to make movies ranging from fun, fictional stories to social commentaries like Ali's project.
"It's a neat idea, the 50 questions for Muslim girls," Chadwick said. "What they want to do with their film is let the world know who they really are."
Ali says she just wants to make a film to educate people about her religion and heritage.
"I think it's important because then people have more experience and are more informed about it," Ali said.
But, Chadwick says this camp is more than just teaching students about acting, photography, and editing.
"We don't necessarily expect them all to grow up to be great filmmakers, but they learn how to work with each other, how to lead each other, how to do a job within the context of making a film and to come through for each other," Chadwick said.
Ali says she enjoyed learning a new craft.
"With all the people helping me, touching the real cameras that cost $5,000," Ali said. "Think about it, I feel like I'm rich."
(© 2015 KUSA)