PBS NC to Air ‘Keepers of the Bees’, Documentary Created by Members of UNCW’s University Relations Team, Students

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

What started off as a short film on the creation of UNCW’s Beekeeping Club has evolved into a poignant documentary focusing on the caretakers of honey bees, one of the “world’s most important species,” according to the Earthwatch Institute.
The film, “Keepers of the Bees” by UNCW’s media production team (part of the Office of University Relations), was inspired by a group of UNCW students who turned their passion for bee preservation into an active, thriving campus community of honey bee advocates. The students formed the UNCW Beekeepers Club, and six of the club’s current and former members are featured in the film. 
“The honey bee is one of the most important contributors to our environment; we are dependent on honey bees to maintain our current agricultural needs,” said the film’s director and UNCW’s Director of Media Production Jesse Bradley. “It’s a great honor to tell the university’s stories, and this is one that especially resonates because its subject matter has wide-reaching implications across the state and the nation.”
In addition to the students in the Beekeepers Club, several other Seahawks were actively involved in virtually all aspects of the film’s creation. They assisted the production team in filming interviews and capturing b-roll footage, created the end-credit illustrations and helped promote the documentary. Creating enhanced applied learning experiences is a key priority of the university’s Strategic Plan.
“The students’ dedication, and their desire to educate future generations about the importance of the honey bee, are really inspirational,” said Bradley. “They were able to experience and participate in a truly unique learning environment, seeing firsthand how a documentary comes together. Mentoring and working with these amazingly talented students is the best part of what we do as UNCW employees.”

“Keepers of the Bees” premieres on PBS NC on July 1 at 10 p.m. It has also been selected to screen at the Pittsburgh Independent Film Festival Aug. 5-9. For a sneak peek, check out the film’s trailer here.

AUG. 9 UPDATE: The film won the Best Documentary award at the Pittsburgh Independent Film Festival.