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Top Young Pittsburgh Filmmakers Announced at Second Annual High School Film Festival ; Bayer Corporation, SciTech Spectacular and Pittsburgh Filmmakers Team Up to Help Teens Creatively Examine Local Environmental Issues
[October 18, 2006]

Top Young Pittsburgh Filmmakers Announced at Second Annual High School Film Festival ; Bayer Corporation, SciTech Spectacular and Pittsburgh Filmmakers Team Up to Help Teens Creatively Examine Local Environmental Issues

(Comtex Business Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) PITTSBURGH, Oct 18, 2006 (U.S. Newswire via COMTEX) --"Redd Up," a film by Chartiers Valley High School student Corey Campbell, was awarded the top honor -- the Grand Prize -- in tonight's second annual SciTech Spectacular C.A.U.S.E. Challenge(tm) by Bayer Corporation -- a High School Film Festival in partnership with Pittsburgh Filmmakers. C.A.U.S.E. stands for Creating Awareness and Understanding of our Surrounding Environment.

Winners of the C.A.U.S.E. Challenge Film Festival were announced at a ceremony hosted by the three partners at the Carnegie Science Center's Science Stage as part of the 10-day SciTech Spectacular -- an interactive festival of science and technology achievements in this region and beyond.

As Grand Prize winner, Corey received $1,000, a digital video camera and case, a Pittsburgh Filmmakers' class, a director's chair, SciTech Spectacular and Three Rivers Film Festival tickets, and a trophy for his school. In addition, awards were bestowed in three other categories, including Silver Prize, Bronze Prize and Honorable Mention. Winners included:

-- Silver Prize: "The Restoration of Nine Mile Run" by Samantha Pollack, Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts High School ($500, Pittsburgh Filmmakers' class, a director's chair, SciTech Spectacular and Three Rivers Film Festival tickets, and a school trophy)

-- Bronze Prize: "Green is the Word: A Pittsburgh Revolution" by Vikram Kedar, Shady Side Academy ($300, Pittsburgh Filmmakers' workshop, a director's chair, SciTech Spectacular and Three Rivers Film Festival tickets, and a trophy)

-- Honorable Mention: Three winners ($50, a director's chair, and SciTech Spectacular and Three Rivers Film Festival tickets)

1. "Danger on the Yough" by Megan Hampshire, Sarah Rudy and Matthew Steiner, Yough High School

2. "Living with Sasquatch" by Bill O'Toole and Chris Amick, Mount Lebanon High School

3. "Water Pollution: Our Future" by Nick Childers, Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts High School

Through the C.A.U.S.E. Challenge Film Festival, Bayer, SciTech Spectacular and Pittsburgh Filmmakers invite high school students -- either individually or in teams of up to four - to write, produce and edit a video or film (5-minute maximum length) on the theme "Mutual Impact: The Environment and You." The C.A.U.S.E. Challenge provides a platform for high school students who are not necessarily on a science track to become more scientifically and environmentally aware using the non-traditional, yet powerful tool of film or video. The filmmaking process also helps students develop their creative voice, master basic skills - such as researching, reading, writing and speaking - and build important science literacy skills like critical thinking, problem solving and team working.

In presenting the Grand Prize, Dr. Attila Molnar, President and CEO of Bayer Corporation, said, "At Bayer, our overarching commitment to corporate social responsibility and sustainable development means we carefully develop products and services specifically designed to benefit current and future generations, while sustaining economic growth without harming the environment or exhausting its resources. Our products and services are based on innovation and sound science. We are investing in science education to build a student population that appreciates science even more. With the C.A.U.S.E. Challenge, we are taking an out- of-the-box approach to traditional science education by using the arts as a way to foster the next generation of environmental stewards."

"This competition allows students to explore science and technology through a unique arts-oriented experience. It complements the energy and mission of SciTech Spectacular to promote understanding and awareness of wide-ranging opportunities in these fields. Visitors to SciTech Spectacular can view the entries through October 22," said Linda Ortenzo, Executive Director, SciTech Spectacular.

"We were especially struck by the creativity, divergent visual styles and unique insights the students demonstrated in their films, all of which align precisely with our commitment to the artist and the advancement of artistic excellence in film, video and photography," said Andrew Swensen, director of Pittsburgh Filmmakers. "It's clear we have some serious young filmmakers in our midst, and we are grateful to be cultivating their interest in artistic expression."

Films were judged by an independent panel consisting of Kenneth T. Bowman, Regional Director, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection; Susan Howard, a Pittsburgh-based editor and sound effects editor for independent and commercial film and television; Davitt B. Woodwell, Vice President, Pennsylvania Environmental Council, Western Pennsylvania; and, Will Zavala, a media producer who specializes in documentaries.

They based their judging on a variety of criteria, including 1) the film's message, 2) ability to deliver the message, 3) connection to the Pittsburgh region, 4) use of available technology, 5) creativity and 6) research.

Bayer Corporation -- The C.A.U.S.E. Challenge(tm) by Bayer Corporation is one component of Bayer's award-winning, company- wide Making Science Make Sense(r) (MSMS) program which advances science literacy through hands-on, inquiry-based science learning, employee volunteerism and public education. Currently, 12 Bayer sites around the country operate local Making Science Make Sense programs, which together represent a national volunteer corps of more than 1,000 employees. For more information about Making Science Make Sense or to subscribe to the Making Science Make Sense e-News Update, please visit

Bayer Corporation, headquartered in Pittsburgh, is a subsidiary of Bayer AG, an international health care, nutrition and innovative materials group based in Leverkusen, Germany. In North America, Bayer had 2005 net sales of 7.3 billion euros and employed 16,200 at year end. Bayer's three operating companies - - Bayer HealthCare LLC, Bayer CropScience LP and Bayer MaterialScience LLC -- improve people's lives through a broad range of essential products that help diagnose, prevent and treat diseases, protect crops and advance automobile safety and durability. Bayer AG stock is a component of the DAX and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: BAY).

SciTech Spectacular -- The 10-day SciTech Spectacular is a community celebration that showcases Pittsburgh as an international hub of scientific and technological developments by featuring Pittsburgh-based companies, universities or organizations, or those with ties to Pittsburgh; and former Pittsburghers now distinguished outside the region. Its programs emphasize the growth industries of Pittsburgh: robotics, information technology, nanotechnology, biotechnology, environmental technology and advanced materials processes; and connections between science and technology and the arts/literature, current events and science in the news.

The diverse programs are designed for families, students and teachers (middle school through college) and adults. Visitors engage in provocative panel discussions, science demos and exciting arts performances, as well as interactive exhibit booths by corporations, universities, community groups and arts organizations.

Pittsburgh Filmmakers -- Pittsburgh Filmmakers is a regional community resource and one of the oldest and largest media art centers in the country. It is committed to the artist and the understanding and advancement of artistic excellence in film, video, photographic and digital expression. It accomplishes this through programs in exhibition, artist membership services, and education.

Pittsburgh Filmmakers' School of Film, Photography and Digital Media offers one of the most complete professional training programs in the country. Classes are offered in film, video, photography and digital arts and are open to the public and can be taken for college credit. Pittsburgh Filmmakers is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

For more information and complete entry rules for the SciTech Spectacular C.A.U.S.E. Challenge(tm) by Bayer Corporation, please visit

Sarah Toulouse of Bayer,
412-777-5200 or

Copyright (C) 2006, U.S. Newswire


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