UNCW Receives Approval for MFA in Filmmaking from UNC System Board of Governors

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The University of North Carolina Wilmington has received approval to develop a Master of Fine Arts in Filmmaking following a vote by the UNC System Board of Governors on April 10. Over the next academic year, the university will work toward securing resources and planning the facilities necessary for program implementation. The MFA will be housed under the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Film Studies.

"The way motion pictures are made, distributed and viewed continues to evolve," said Dave Monahan, chair of the department of film studies. "This intensive program is designed to produce complete filmmakers capable of creating cinematic art as well as motion picture content for a global media marketplace.”

An immersive three-year experience, the program will admit 12 students each academic year to study and practice narrative, documentary and experimental approaches to motion picture production through courses in screenwriting, producing, directing, cinematography, sound and editing. The comprehensive curriculum will train students in creative and technical practices applicable to a variety of markets, including feature films, television, and web-based entertainment, as well as advertising and marketing, interactive media, gaming, and media-integrated publishing.

“Motion pictures permeate culture and commerce,” said Monahan. “This MFA in Filmmaking program is designed to help create the next generation of North Carolina content creators, who will support our existing feature film and television industry, as well as develop new media markets made possible by emerging technologies.”

Students will develop technical expertise crewing and collaborating on any number of the 36 plus motion pictures the program will produce each year. They will also complete an additional applied learning experience such as an internship or mentorship.

The Department of Film Studies developed the program in conjunction with a filmmaking MFA specializing in screenwriting and producing to be offered at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts’ School of Filmmaking. Planned UNCW and UNCSA program collaborations will include a reciprocity/articulation agreement, mutual online courses, and joint networking and screening events. All enrolled students will take an additional industry entrepreneurship course, which will be offered in conjunction with the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

The MFA will provide undergraduate film studies students greater access to advanced technologies, professional facilities and graduate student projects and mentors.