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Applications are now closed for the 2019 Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship Program.

For questions about the program or information on how to be involved in the future please email Thane Chastain at thane[at]tallgrassfilm.org.

"I think this program is unique in our country. It is a very rare opportunity for kids to get involved in the REAL film world. We had real responsibilities, like introducing films, and hosting Q&A sessions, and we became comfortable talking about films with people other than our peers." - Peter Daood, The Independent School

About the Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship Program

The Tallgrass Film Association Class of 2019 Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship (EPA), is headed by Education and Outreach Manager Thane Chastain.

The program is limited to 18 students who will take part in this immersive educational program covering several facets of film including: filmmaking, film criticism and film theory.

Our 2019 EPAs will have the opportunity to learn from and interact with professionals in the film industry, covering a wide range of topics including: film criticism, directing, producing, screenwriting, audio production, lighting, camera technique, video editing and more.

Industry guests scheduled for the 2019 Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship program include:

Fletcher Powell (Film Critic, KMUW Public Radio), Rod Pocowatchit (Film Critic, Wichita Eagle), James ChoiEmily KincaidKendall GoldbergRyland AldrichSavannah RodgersEllen Crispin and more to be announced!

Along with these interactive classes, our EPAs will be provided hands-on learning opportunities, including:

Screening and reviewing more than 125 movies submitted by their peers to the 17th Annual Tallgrass Film Festival (Oct. 16-20). These reviews will help shape the Joel Fein Emerging Filmmakers Shorts Program at the festival, as the program will be curated with the assistance of our EPAs.

  • Field Trips to local production facilities in Wichita.
  • Volunteer opportunities at Tallgrass events, including Take36 and the Tallgrass Film Festival.
  • First-hand learning experience at with state-of-the-art production equipment (green screens, motion capture, top of the line cameras) at Wichita State University’s Shocker Studios.

Students will receive an all-access TALLPass in exchange for their participation in the program, as well as an additional all-access pass for a parent or guardian. 

Program Dates

Classes are scheduled to meet the following Saturdays from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. (2.5 hours) beginning with Orientation on Saturday, May 11th through the festival.

May 11th - Orientation

Classes Sessions:

  • June 8, 15, 22
  • July 6, 13, 20, 27
  • August 3, 10, 17
  • September 7, 14, 21, 28
  • October 5, 12 (Festival 16-20)
  • November 2 (Wrap-Up Party)

Questions, email thane[at]tallgrassfilm.org or text 316.371.4474


The Requirements

To qualify for the Emerging Filmmaker Apprenticeship, you must be a Wichita-area (within driving distance) middle or high school student, aged 13-18.

Being an EPA requires a substantial commitment (over 75 hours, which ecompasses all aspects of the program,) and students will be responsible for completing a certain percentage of hours. There is no cost to participate.

Featured 2018 EPA Members

Amy Baber, Northeast Magnet High School, Class of 2020

Top 3 Films:

  • Misery
  • Get Out
  • The Shining
Adler Moss, Bishop Carroll Catholic High School Class of 2020

Top 3 Films:

  • A Brighter Summer Day
  • In Cold Blood
  • Barry Lyndon 
Deanna Moreno, Haysville Middle School.

Top 3 Films:

  • Get Out 
  • The Shining
  • Halloween
Lauren Zoller, Wichita High School East, Class of 2020

Top 3 Films:

  • Amelie
  • Singin' in the Rain
  • Vertigo
Hannah Ezell, Wichita East High School, Class of 2019

Top 3 Films:

  • The Godfather
  • Arrival
  • The Dark Knight
Micah Streeter, Rose Hill High School, Class of 2019

Top 3 Films:

  • Dial M for Murder
  • The Age of Innocence
  • The Squid and the Whale
Peter Daood, The Independent School, Class of 2020

Top 3 Films:

  • Band of Robbers
  • 12 Angry Men
  • Ferris Bueller's Day Off
Ryan Edwards, Wichita Collegiate School, Class of 2020

Top 3 Films:

  • The Shining
  • The Evil Dead II
  • The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

This organization received funding for general operational support from the City of Wichita