STEAM Student Wins First Place in Hero Awards

December 13 19:50 2021

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La Mesa, CA 91942
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Hundreds of videos from around the world enter into the My Hero International Film Festival competition every year. One lucky student from STEAM Academy at La Presa won first place this year.

The My Hero International Film Festival opened its’ competition applications to students worldwide for the 17th year. Many students entered, including media students from STEAM Academy at La Presa. Sofia Junco, a middle schooler in STEAM Academy’s Media Program, became the first-place winner in the Sheltering In Place category of the competition. Her short film The Quiet Classroom was inspired by quarantine and a conversation with her teacher. 

Like many students across the world, Sofia and her classmates felt the struggles that came with learning in an at-home environment. In general, the quarantine period was difficult for students for many reasons, ranging from lack of proper support to the isolation and lack of community. In her interview with My Hero, Sofia cited this as one of the themes and inspirations for her project, saying, “During the pandemic, we felt a loss of connection and an emptiness within us and at the school. We decided to do a distant video project using poetry to convey the feelings brought out by the pandemic. Even though it is a somber topic, we decided to leave on a positive message of hope for the future.” 

One of the biggest challenges faced during this project was completing the video while still taking part in online learning. Because of this, Sofia did a lot of her work via Zoom meetings with her teacher, Mr. Ian Zarvetsky. She turned in the project via Google Classroom; Sofia and Mr. Zarvetsky then discussed it further before submitting the final piece. Sofia was also a finalist in the IVIE Video Contest in San Diego.

You can watch Sofia’s short film by clicking this link to the My Hero website.

About La Mesa-Spring Valley School District

La Mesa-Spring Valley School District (LMSVSD) serves students from Early Childhood to Middle School in La Mesa and Spring Valley. They offer tuition-free neighborhood schools, before and after school care, as well as all-day kindergarten. In addition to robust and caring neighborhood schools with award-winning teachers and programs, La Mesa-Spring Valley Schools is also proud to offer academies with specialty programs to enhance each child’s strengths and unique interests.

Visit the District website at and follow LMSVSD on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Media Contact
Company Name: La Mesa-Spring Valley School District
Contact Person: David Feliciano
Email: Send Email
Phone: (619) 668-5740
Country: United States