LivingStone International University exists to transform Africa through quality, Christ-centered higher education. What a great thing to be a part of, right?
Although I haven’t been able to travel to Africa yet (fingers crossed), I got the next best thing: to edit 1 Terabyte of footage shot by 5 different photographers on 3 different trips over the past 2 years. Okay, so maybe that’s not the next best thing, but I definitely feel like I got to know a lot of the students at LIU, and that’s pretty cool.
Most of the time on this project was spent sorting through hours upon hours of footage and finding the respective audio tracks and second shooter clips. I finally bit the bullet and bought Pluraleyes, and I wish I had done in a few days beforehand. It literally would have saved me 10-12 hours just on this project.
But after thumbing through 22+ hours of footage and finding the best clips, I was able to start piecing it all together according to the storyboard we had written previously. We didn’t want it to be the typical Africa-is-poor-please-send-money video, and we wanted to stray from the style of videos in the previous years where it was 3 heartbreaking minutes of talking about “the need” in Uganda and Africa, and then presenting “the solution”. We really wanted to have the viewer feel connected to the students right off the bat, and then go into “the need” without getting too sappy. Then we wanted to present LIU not just as some university that may or may not transform a city, a country, and a continent later on, but as an institution that has already changed the lives of several individuals, and is ready to send them out into the workplace as qualified, trained, skilled leaders who are ready to skyrocket to the top of society and use their influence to share the gospel that can transform a nation.
I’m very pleased with how this edit turned out, and I’m honored to work with LivingStone University Partners to see their vision for Uganda and Africa come to life.
Here’s some more about Uganda and what LIU is doing:
Uganda, who Winston Churchill referred to as the pearl of Africa, has the youngest population not only in all of Africa, but the entire world. While there are still lingering effects of dictatorial rule during the 1970-80’s, when Uganda’s people and society were ravaged and only a select minority were given access to education, there now exists a stable government making progress in most areas of society including secondary education.
As population growth escalates, even in a largely-monogamous society, an increasing number of students do not have an opportunity for higher education. In 2009 alone, more than 35,000 students who were academically qualified were unable to enroll in a university because Uganda’s universities cannot accommodate them. There simply isn’t enough space.
Ask any Ugandan and they will agree that the only true hope for a brighter future is education. Christ-centered students who become the fabric of Ugandan society, and, over time, the whole of Africa, are the key to a healthy, productive, Christian nation.
An extraordinarily effective mission team in Mbale, Uganda, working with other missionaries and native Africans, has played a vital role in planting almost 500 churches in Kenya, Uganda and southern Sudan.
The team has also had great success in providing certificate-level training through the Messiah Theological Institute (MTI). The success of MTI has led the group to further recognize the need for higher level training—and training over much more broad areas of study—which can only be accomplished in a university setting.
The LIU vision is taking shape rapidly with much work to be done. Already, 56 acres has been acquired in a key location at the intersection of two transcontinental highways near Mbale. Acquiring the land, since it was owned by more than 40 individuals, is a miracle in itself.
In 2006, the leadership of LIU (who had formed a recognized Ugandan entity named Harmony Group Limited to comply with Ugandan law) approached missionary and church leaders in the USA about beginning an administrative and financial support arm of the university. So, Harmony Project International (now known as LivingStone University Partners) was formed to encourage all Christians who have an interest in Africa to partner with LIU in this historic opportunity.
In 2008, LIU was granted a letter of interim authority by the Uganda’s National Council of Higher Education to begin operation. In March 2010, after rigorous inspections and interviews, a provisional license was granted, which authorizes LIU to admit students and issue degrees. After three years of operation, LIU may apply for full accreditation.
The university opened the doors to its first class on January 16, 2012 on a campus in Mbale.
The permanant campus plan is at an advanced stage with modern, pristine buildings — part of a master plan designed by Engineering Ministries International to accommodate student growth to 4,000 over 15 years.
You can visit LivingStone’s site here.
Filmed by: A lot of people
Edited by: Taylor Stanley
Edited using: Premiere Pro CC, After Effects CC, Red Giant Magic Bullet Looks, Red Giant Pluraleyes, Photoshop CC