Women’s Education
2nd Place



2018 High School Winners

2018 Advancing Women and Girls


By: Thalia Kennedy

Lane Technical College Preparatory High School
Chicago, IL


Thalia Kennedy is a freshman at Lane Technical College Preparatory High School in Chicago, IL. The school emphasizes technology in education across subject areas and she created her video as an Environmental Science class assignment (where it was voted the best film in the class by her peers). The choice to focus on the topic of Advancing Women and Girls was clear to Thalia, who has been passionate about women’s education for a while. In fact, she recently wrote an extensive research paper on the subject for another class. She shared that her interest first developed when she was in middle school, reading Malala Yousafzai’s book I Am Malala and exploring the work of the Malala Fund. Thalia was further inspired to advocate for women by attending the Women’s March on Washington in the U.S. capital last year.

Thalia has produced videos before, and enjoyed combining her talents in filmmaking with her interests in women’s education and population. Thalia was slightly aware of population and its impacts before entering the contest, but says that the “process of making my video really brought it to my attention.” She had a lot of fun using stop-motion animation techniques for her video, a technique she has used to make films before. For future participants, Thalia advises students to focus their video on something they are passionate about, and don’t procrastinate.

Thalia dedicates a lot of her free time outside of school to dance, practicing mostly ballet but other styles as well. She also loves computer science, taking as many electives on the subject as she can. Thalia in considering putting some her prize money to use to buy a laptop, and hopes to continue filmmaking outside of class in the future.