SFA Welcomes Our Summer Documentary Film Interns

This summer the Southern Foodways Alliance begins a Summer Documentary Film Internship program to encourage and nurture emerging documentary filmmakers. For two months this summer, two interns will work directly under the guidance and mentorship of SFA’s Pihakis Foodways Documentary Filmmaker, Ava Lowrey, culminating in a Mississippi-based documentary film.

Pankaj Khadka, a Nepali native, is a freelance multimedia journalist currently based in New York City. He aspires to tell stories of subjects and issues that engage and challenge his thoughts and beliefs through a combination of text stories, captivating photographs and incorporation of multimedia.

His reporting quests have taken him to parades and festivals across the swamps of southwest Louisiana; to rodeos, elections and fire outbreaks in the foothills of southern Colorado and mountain peaks of northern Colorado; to marches, marathons and protests in the cityscapes of Boston and New York. His works include in-depth reporting and photo stories on community leaders, regional cultures and traditions of different American communities.

Victoria De Leone grew up in mountainous Central Oregon. Trading the small community in the woods for a slightly larger one on an island, she studied food cultures and immigration narratives at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. After completing her undergraduate studies, she served as a community manager for a grocery delivery startup in Brooklyn.

Currently, she is a Masters candidate at the Center for the Study of Southern Culture where she focuses her studies on the diverse food stories of the South. After taking part in the Center’s Summer Documentary Workshop last year, she found her voice as an aspiring documentary filmmaker and continued to foster that voice in Lowrey’s Documenting Southern Foodways course.

We are excited to have Pankaj and Victoria join us this summer and to see the work they produce. Keep an eye out for their short documentary films later this summer, and in the meantime you can follow their progress here on our blog.