media database

Youth Media Program Building

Portland Community Media
VISTA Name: 
Gariet Cowin
Program Start: 
Program End: 
Project Description: 

OLLIE, Oregon Learning Lab for Information Education
The Oregon Learning Lab for Information Education, also known as OLLIE, is a collaborative effort between Portland Community Media and Metro East Community Media to meet the media education and technology needs of under-served youth, schools, and community-based organizations in Multnomah County, Oregon. OLLIE provides media literacy, tools and training to a variety of young people by bringing multimedia technology into the classroom.

The VISTA will work with the OLLIE coordinator, educators from Portland Community Media and Multnomah Community Television, and area schools and community centers to meet the goals of the OLLIE project.

Specific responsibilities include but are not limited to:

• Learn and be able to teach the OLLIE curriculum and equipment

• Participate in OLLIE productions as a trainer

• Communicate with OLLIE Coordinator regarding scheduling

• Keep a personal schedule of OLLIE training responsibilities

• Arrive at OLLIE projects on time and prepared

• Working with community partners to plan successful OLLIE projects and events

• Developing youth outreach and education efforts of Portland Community Media and Multnomah Community Television.

• Participate in OLLIE maintenance and development

• Research and submit OLLIE media works to
International, national and local film festivals

Project Outcome: 

In developing OLLIE’s digital distribution strategy, Gariet has achieved three major accomplishments.

First, Gariet brought the OLLIE program and Portland Community Media into the Youth Video Exchange Network (YVXN) as a steering partner. OLLIE’s participation in YVXN has allowed us to share broadcast quality student work with other youth media centers around the country, as well as acquire youth media content to broadcast on our own channels.

In parallel to his work with NYMAP, Gariet also researched and set up a site for the OLLIE program. This site allows us to share our videos with others at any time, and in turn allows our visitors to post the videos on their websites and blogs.

Finally, Gariet developed a website for the project using the Drupal content management system. This site provides a comprehensive resource about the program for the communities we serve, and includes a searchable video database. Through his research and work with Drupal and for our youth project, Gariet has set a course for the Media Center as a whole. Recently a staff member expressed that Gariet’s ability to explain the benefits and values of these technologies to others led to the media center to develop a digital distribution plan that incorporated the lessons he has learned. Gariet’s work has also had an impact on the larger community, including interesting and attracting a local foundation to provide operational funding for our project.

Impact Quote: 

Gariet’s technology skills and ability to learn and teach new technologies has been an extremely valuable asset to the OLLIE project. Gariet is also an excellent teacher. He is able to engage and inspire his students as they plan and create their video projects. Gariet’s positive attitude about working with this project and VISTA is enjoyed by those who work with him. His commitment to helping others and the value of youth media is appreciated.”
- Laura Craig-Bennett, supervisor

Development Specialist and Teaching Assistant

Street Level Youth Media
VISTA Name: 
Kristen Wernicke
Program Start: 
Program End: 
Project Description: 

Major responsibilities:

• Assisting in maintaining two media lab facilities, computer equipment, and software.
• Instructing youth in computer and media arts literacy.
• Assisting in the preliminary creation and maintenance of a searchable youth video database.
• Creating, updating and maintaining a festival and screening database.
• Developing relationships with the local community: youth, parents, neighbors, and other community and youth organizations.
• Meeting regularly with direct supervisor for assignments and review.
• Attending monthly all-staff meetings, and weekly Drop-In Program staff meetings.
• Assisting in maintaining records for on-going internal and external program assessment.

Kristin has been instrumental in stabilizing Street-Level’s staff support of summer and after school program activities, as well as conducting research on resource opportunities (both human and monetary) and possible venues for exhibition of youth work. Kristin has greatly assisted with program activities, including youth supervision, record keeping, community public relations, and volunteer recruitment and management. Her daily duties have consisted of, but have not been limited to, computer literacy and media arts instruction, resource database creation, and assisting with the development and support of programming for young women and teens.

Kristin has also served as a liaison for Street-Level in the local technology community and neighborhood, representing the organization and promoting its philosophy by attending local CTCNet Chicago events and forums, participating in a six-week Media Activism Institute sponsored by a local media arts organization, and staffing youth outreach events at local festivals and universities.

Project Outcome: 

In August 2002, Kristin assisted the organization and youth in preparation for its Street-to-Street block party/media installation event by co-designing an installation with Street-Level’s Girls Group participants, and co-producing two video pieces for Street-Level’s outdoor public broadcast/performance of youth media work in September 2002.

During the fall of 2002, Kristin accompanied staff and youth representatives to the National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture conference in Seattle, WA, and worked with staff to develop a searchable database for our collection of youth videos, as well as create a system for the management and tracking of videos distributed to film festivals and screenings.

Impact Quote: 

We are quite happy that we selected Kristin as our VISTA, because she is a well-rounded worker with multiple abilities and interests, and because of this, the organization has been able to maintain some semblance of a productive and meaningful media lab program.

Transmission Project