Student Opportunities

Student Filmmakers Association

SFA is the place for anyone who loves film and who wants to see good stories reach the screen. Every semester, outside of class, we make movies, we show movies, we watch movies, and we have a blast doing it. Consider SFA a roaming laboratory where Film and Media Arts students can supplement the education they receive in class, and where absolutely anyone interested in movies can be a part of the magic, regardless of his or her major or amount of experience. We are a family of students and alumni that connects each other with internships, work opportunities, chances to meet experts in the film industry and good stories ripe for the telling. We are the next great filmmakers of our generation! Join us on Thursday afternoons at 5:00 p.m. in GG 3531 during the school year and visit our website or connect with SFA on Facebook for more information!

Graduating Senior Honors

At the Honors Convocation each spring, the Division gives out several awards to graduating Film & Media Arts majors (including those who graduated the prior August or December as well as those about to graduate in May).

Up to three recipients of the Outstanding Scholarly Achievement award are selected by the faculty each year based on GPA. Three other awards are based on creative works. These are:

- the Nash Parsley Memorial Award for Creative Achievement, which includes a $2000 award
- the award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinema/Television Production
- the award for Outstanding Achievement in Screenwriting, which includes a $1000 award

At the start of each spring semester, the Division will put out information on how students can submit materials for consideration for these three awards.

Grants, Scholarships, and Fellowships

In addition to the wide range of financial aid options available to all SMU students (details here), SMU's Meadows School of the Arts (home to the Division of Film & Media Arts) offers scholarships and grants specifically for those majoring in an arts discipline (including Film & Media Arts). For incoming Film & Media Arts students, these opportunities include the highly competitive Meadows Scholars Program, which offers renewable scholarships to first-year admitted Meadows majors (B.A. and B.F.A.) based on academic criteria, and Meadows Artistic Merit Scholarships, which are awarded to incoming B.F.A. students based on a combination of academic and artistic merit (the latter based on the student's application portfolio). Details on both these programs can be found on the Meadows School's Scholarships and Financial Aid page.

Funding for specific artistic projects (including films and videos) is available through Meadows Exploration grants, which are awarded a few times a year to current undergraduates doing significant projects (usually interdisciplinary) beyond their normal classroom work. Notices about application processes and timelines are put out multiple times each year.

For graduate students, some scholarships and teaching assistantships are available. Information about any such awards being offered a student are sent out at the same time as notice of acceptance to the program.

Directed Studies

A directed study is a close collaboration between a professor and an advanced student with junior or senior standing who conducts a rigorous research or creative project that goes beyond the experience available in course offerings. The student must secure formal approval from the professor to undertake a directed studies project.

SMU Summer Film Production

Every two years, SMU students and alumni create a feature-length film through the Summer Film Production (SFP) program, doing everything from coming up with a script, to planning the shoot, to shooting the film, to editing and sound design, to sending the finished product to film festivals. Full details of the program and how to get involved can be found under the Summer Film Production link on this website.