2008 Student EcoFilm Awards (SEAs) Festival

The Student EcoFilm Awards (SEAs) is the first-ever ESA contest designed to honor outstanding student contributions to ecological science through film. The contest will culminate in a two-hour film festival at the 2008 ESA annual meeting in Milwaukee, where we will present the best student ecology films. The three most outstanding films will be awarded free registration to the 2008 meeting! To learn more about the first annual SEAs contest and festival, or to submit a video to the contest, click on the link above.

To download an application for video submission, click here

The Student EcoFilm Awards (SEAs) contest will open on January 30th 2007 and will culminate in a two-hour film festival at the 2008 ESA annual meeting in Milwaukee. The festival will include presentations of the best student films and a panel of judges will determine the most outstanding films to receive one of three Student EcoFilm Awards. There will also be an additional Student Section Choice Award which will be elected by the members of the ESA Student Section. The recipients of the awards will receive free registration to the 2008 ESA annual meeting. The goal of the festival is to increase student participation within ESA and to promote the awareness and understanding of ecological science within ESA, the scientific community, and the public.

The contest will begin with a two and half month-long call for video submissions from ESA members who are students (from high school to post-doctoral stage, both included). Videos will be submitted in digital format to the address indicated below. The contest will begin on February 4th 2008 and the call for submissions will end on May 15th 2008. From May 15th – June 15th, the ESAs panel will select the best film in each category. The members of the Student Section will vote for the Student Section’s Choice Award.

Film Requirements:

  • Criteria for the SEAs’08 will be overall lenient, with the exception of the time restrictions on the video length and file size.
  • Fiction, non-fiction, documentary, and fantasy film submissions will be accepted.
  • Submissions must not be shorter than 5, nor longer than 7 minutes in length.
  • Eligible submitters must be ESA members with student status (from high school to post-doctoral stages, both included).
  • Several ESA student members can collaborate in the same film project, but the registration prize will always be always for one person.
  • Films must be in one of the following categories and the SEAs panel has the right to disqualify a film if it does not follow the description of the category under which it was submitted:

    "Pure Nature": videos in this category must capture processes and mechanisms among species and between species and the environment that occur naturally without the interaction of humans.

    "Humans & the Environment": videos in this category must focus on the effects, negative or positive (e.g. conservation) that humans have had through time on the environment.

    "Methods in Ecology": videos in this category must pay special attention to the applications of new technologies in the field, and how these help scientists better understand ecological processes.

  • Films cannot be made using cell-phone cameras, and the video quality must be high enough for clear visualization on a 5x5 m2 screen with a regular projector.

Panel and Film Selection:
The film panel will be composed of 6-12 people, including active members from several sections within the Ecological Society of America (ESA Student Section, ESA student members, representatives from the ESA standing committees - Science Committee, EHRC, PAC - members of the Education Section, SEEDS members, etc), as well as specialists in the field of film and nature documentary making. As judges, no member of the panel will participate in the process of making a film for the present contest. The panel will decide the best film for each of the three categories described above. Honorable mentions are possible if the members of the panel decide so. The panel will select the winners and honorable mentions by July 1st

Each of the winning films will receive one free registration (reimbursement) to the 2008 annual ESA meeting. Honorable mentions are possible if the quality of the finalist films are worth such a distinction. Prize for honorable mentions is yet TBA.

Officers of the Student Section not taking part of the SEAs panel will choose the best 15 films among the three categories, which will be presented to the members of the Student Section using a special group created on www.scivee.tv for such a purpose. Student Section members will then be able to vote for their favorite EcoFilm and the chosen film will be awarded the ESA Student Section’s Choice Award: $200.

The winning films and honorable mention films will be shown at the SEAs’08, which will take place immediately following the Student Section mixer of the ESA annual meeting 2008 in Milwaukee. Prizes will be given by the members of the panel in a ceremony at the Student Mixer. The event will be held at Marquette University on Monday evening of the 2008 ESA annual meeting.

February 4th:
Open call for film submissions

May 15th:
Close call for film submissions
Select best film submissions

June 15th:
Open call for Student Section’s Choice Award
Notify film submitters of their status in the contest

July 1st:
Select winners of the SEAs’08

Winning films and honorable mentions will be presented at the Student Mixer in the 2008 ESA annual meeting, in Milwaukee.

Role of the Student Section:
The role of the Student Section in the SEAs is to help organize and execute the contest and festival, including forming the SEAs panel, via the student SEAs Coordinator and Special Events Coordinator.

To download an application for video submission, click here


  • Films must be uploaded on the SEAs community group created on www.SciVee.tv (uploading procedure is described in the SEAs’08 submission form, downloadable at LINK).
  • The SEAs’08 submission form must be sent via email to Ms. Michelle Horton (michelle@esa.org).
  • Submitted films missing required information or not complying with the requirements described above will be automatically disqualified from the contest.
  • Contact Info:
    For more information, please contact us at:

    Regarding organization and general aspects of the SEAs:

    Regarding general aspects of the SEAs and ESA Student Section:

    Regarding technical problems and assistance with SciVee: