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A&M students producing documentary for 2015 Rose Bowl parade, game

Kimberly Pettway is one of 12 Alabama A&M University communications arts students producing a documentary about the 2015 Tournament of Roses Parade and football game. (CONTRIBUTED)
Kimberly Pettway is one of 12 Alabama A&M University communications arts students producing a documentary about the 2015 Tournament of Roses Parade and football game. (CONTRIBUTED)

NORMAL – The Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade has 12 invited Alabama A&M University communications arts students to produce a behind-the-scenes, real-time film documentary about the 2015 Tournament of Roses Parade and football game.

Media Arts Institute of Alabama (MAIA) is spearheading the project.

The “Huntsville to Hollywood” documentary “marks the first time communications arts students from a Historically Black College or University have been offered the opportunity to produce a film about inner workings of America’s premier New Year’s celebration,” MAIA founder and CEO Leon Burnette said.

The A&M students will complete all pre-production and project research in Huntsville, guided by Burnette and Joetta DiBella. They will fly to Pasadena on Dec. 26 to shoot footage and interview individuals. Kimberly Ballard with KimberlyWritesCreative for MAIA is serving as the entourage’s publicist.

One of these students, Kimberly Pettway, 24, grew up in Mobile and currently works at WalMart in Madison in the eye care department. Pettway’s tentative plans are to intern at Mobile’s Channel 15 TV with their news anchor and eventually work as a crime reporter.

Pettway earned an associate’s degree in social work and transferred to A&M to pursue a bachelor’s degree. During a live shoot with communications arts students, “she says a proverbial light went off,” Burnette said. Pettway then worked on a video project for the Semper Fi Community Task Force.

“Kimberly has been focused on a career as a crime reporter ever since,” Burnette said.

“I’ve have always watched crime reporters, fascinated by how they can help solve or get the word out about missing children,” Pettway said. “I find myself wanting to be there on the ground, investigating the facts and telling the story.”

Burnette said most of the 12 A&M students have never flown or stayed in an upscale hotel. “I’m delighted to coordinate such a life-altering experience and possibly career-changing opportunity to these 12 special kids.”

MAIA is accepting financial support for the students’ expenses in California. For more information, call 256-525-1203 or visit Huntsville2Hollywood.com.

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