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Michael Shum wins 100 Projects for Peace grant to film documentary

Michael Shum '07 was awarded $10,000 from the Kathryn Wasserman Davis 100 Projects for Peace program to film a documentary in Nigeria. Shum plans to use the film to raise awareness about world poverty and health and disease issues in Nigeria. The project combines many of Shum's interests: sociology, his major, as well as film and African studies, his minors.

Citing the visual and emotional draw of documentary film, Shum says, "It really connects people in a way a [legislative] bill cannot. I want to be that middle ground to bring substantial change."

The film, which he plans to shoot this summer, will be made with the help of various organizations such as Citizens for Global Solutions, American's Family Inc. and the Mercy Foundation. When completed, it will be shown to politicians as a means to lobby for social change and posted on the Internet. Shum says the project is "all about mediating between people who are suffering and people who can change that."

Shum is one of 100 students at 65 colleges and universities to receive a $10,000 grant for his project. The program, established by philanthropist Kathryn Wasserman Davis on her 100th birthday with a donation of $1 million, is designed to encourage and support students to create and implement ideas for building peace throughout the world.

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