According to English student Nicholas Ashmore, “It isn’t every day that we get to have our questions answered by an Academy Award-nominated expert.” However for Mr. Ashmore and his fellow students enrolled in Dr. Joel Baetz’s GTA Literature class at Trent University Durham, that is exactly what happened. Art came to vivid life in the classroom.
On Tuesday, January 27 students were granted the rare opportunity to engage with renowned, Canadian filmmaker, Hubert Davis. He was invited to the campus by Professor Baetz to examine his film Invisible City, a poignant portrayal of the struggles and achievements of two teenage boys growing up in Regent Park.
Students in Prof. Baetz’s class are currently studying the distinctions and diversity within Toronto’s neighbourhoods through works of literature and film. They were thrilled to gain a first-hand perspective of life in Regent Park from Mr. Davis who immersed himself in the community over a period of three years.
“This opportunity speaks to the dedication of Trent Durham's great faculty,” Mr. Ashmore added. “Professor Baetz has inspired us to embark on this literary journey as we unearth more communities within Toronto each week of the course.”
In addition to the academic discussion, fourth-year English student, Melissa Haslam felt the film, which follows teenage boys Mikey and Kendall and their relationship with their mentor and teacher, Ainsworth, made a personal impact on her.
“I have chosen a career path in teaching and education, and seeing an educator have this kind of influence on youth reminds me of why I want to work in education and the type of educator that I want to be,” she said.
Posted on Friday, January 30, 2015.