University of Northern Iowa senior Jason Vizzini observes life through the lens of a camera, and hopes to continue doing so for many years to come.
Vizzini majors in electronic media at UNI and hopes move to Los Angles, Calif, to pursue a career in the movie and film industry after graduation. He is specifically interested in cinema photography and documentaries.
The Cedar Rapids, Iowa, native is building his resume during his time at UNI. Vizzini has produced two award-winning videos during his time on campus. His first was a video for Pi Sigma Epsilon, a marketing, sales, and management student organization on campus. The second was a documentary he created for a class project.
“The videos are definitely strong resume builders,” said Vizzini. “If I have an interview with someone I can show them a strong portfolio with projects I have made while still in school and the awards that I won for that. It really sets me apart from others that may be interviewing for the same position.”
Vizzini was thrilled to attend a presentation by Lucy Walker, a documentary filmmaker and two-time Academy Award nominee. Walker visited UNI in September 2014 as part of the William and Stephanie Clohesy Documentary Film Series.
“I look up to her and think I could be in Walker’s shoes someday.” Vizzini said. “It was really awesome because you were able to ask someone who’s been there.”
Vizzini, a recipient of the Roy J. Carver Scholarship, has found the margin in his schedule to focus on his studies and video production thanks to scholarship support. Prior to earning scholarships, Vizzini was balancing a full class load and working 25 hours per week.
“It was difficult for me because I was only focused on working and making sure I could afford everything,” Vizzini said. “I wasn't getting involved with my major and wasn't putting enough time into school. As soon as I received the scholarship, it was a huge weight lifted off my shoulders, and I could actually focus on my studies and get involved more at UNI.”
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“Scholarships have given me a chance to open doors that I couldn't get to before,” said Vizzini. “They really help students like me move forward in life.”