Meet SOAC’s past multimedia content producers and check out some of their work below!
Resilient Restaurant Stories
Stories of Atlantic City correspondents hit the pavement in town to discover the impact of a pandemic on local restaurants. Atlantic City has been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, recently reporting unemployment rates in the past few months as high as 26%. Despite the challenging economy AC is facing, the restaurateurs featured in these profiles show tremendous courage and resilience.
A visual storytelling series that showcases a community through the eyes of its people.
As an Asian American and first-generation college student, my passion has always been creating and sharing stories that inspire people and motivate change. I am drawn to storytelling that is rich in culture and diversity. After arriving in the United States, my parents first settled in Atlantic City. AC has remained an integral part of who I am and what I love.
As a Communication Studies major with a minor in Writing, I find that producing and listening to stories of resilience provides an outlet to educate and inspire others to create change. While I am not an Atlantic City native, I’m passionate about learning the new and different perspectives of the people who live there. I focus on telling factual stories while writing them in a way that will encourage audiences to read more.
As a photographer and videographer, I bring a new form of creative visual storytelling to this project, incorporating my experience covering sports, news, people, lifestyle. I feel a strong emotional link with the city. As a child who was adopted, I struggle with change and acceptance. When talking with community elders, we have connected about how challenging it can be to adjust to transitions in neighborhoods and policy. This helps me bring their stories to life through visual multimedia.
Even though I was born in Atlantic City, working on this project has helped me to feel more connected with the community. As a homebody, and a first-generation Mexican-American, I now realize I was stuck between two cultures for much of my childhood and teen years. This experience has allowed me to see more opportunities to get involved. Through my photos and storytelling I hope to reach others who also want to connect.
Working with the Stories of Atlantic City has shown me that media representation is not a given. I better understand that we need to make space for everyone to share their stories, especially those in marginalized and under-resourced communities. Stories about resilience can be a powerful tool to show and prove that we are not alone when overcoming obstacles. This experience has also shown me a new way to be aware of my pre-existing assumptions about community dynamics and the harm we can cause with labeling and rushing to conclusions.
My storytelling approach is to develop stories that have the potential to ultimately change negative perspectives of Atlantic City, by highlighting the stories of resilience. As a resident of Stockton’s AC campus, I am able to observe and connect with the community regularly in the neighborhood and beyond. This experience allowed me to develop sympathy and empathy when considering the struggles of being heard within not only the community, but society as a whole. I am passionate about sharing stories that focus on the economy and social change.
Atlantic City is an important part of my identity and will forever be my home. Through my storytelling, I hope to present AC to the world the way I see it, as a first generation Vietnamese American. I seek to explore stories about AC’s diverse community. I love learning about individual stories of resilience and how so many individuals give back to the place they grew up.
Being relatively new to South Jersey, sharing stories about Atlantic City has helped me connect with the region and learn more about environmental justice in this unique part of the state. Through this work, I can help break stereotypes and share inspiring stories that highlight the city’s changemakers and offer new perspectives on environmental issues such as climate change and sustainability issues.
My storytelling approach is a mix of gathering authentic stories and sharing pieces of the city’s history and its vibrant current culture. Because of my own passion for community service, I love learning about how others are making change in various ways.
As a first-generation Mexican-Guatemalan American, I feel connected to covering AC’s diverse communities and rich culture and helping to close information gaps. Originally from Rehoboth Beach, Delaware there are many parallels between these beach communities, from the coastline to the tourism-dependent economy.
As a SOAC producer since January 2021, I joined during the height of the Coronavirus pandemic and in the midst of a social reckoning. This work provided a creative outlet and an opportunity to connect with the city and its people.
This semester, as I have learned more about AC, I feel closer to it, even though I grew up just a couple miles away. Capturing and sharing photos, and connecting with community members, inspires me to highlight the city through a unique lens.