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Global Exchange Program 2020

These 7 new short documentaries were created by teams of students from the University of Southern California and the Communication University of China during the Summer of 2020.
September 13, 2021

Videos are also available on our YouTube channel.

On June 15th, 14 students from the Communication University of China in Beijing and USC's School of Cinematic Arts met each other for the first time on Zoom. They pitched ideas, formed global collaborations, and began researching their chosen subjects - ranging from immigration, life during COVID-19 times, and familial and romantic love.

CUC Faculty

  • Yong Lee, Professor, School of Theater, Film and Television, CUC
  • Jing Wang, Associate Professor, School of Theater, Film and Television, CUC

USC Faculty 

  • Pablo Frasconi, Professor of the Practice of Cinematic Arts, School of Cinematic Arts
  • Yutong Liu, Student Assistant

USC Course Benefactor: Stephen Lesser

Click on the links below to view other films: 
2006 | 2008 | 2009 | 2011 | 2014 | 2016 | 2019 | 2020

Abroad (11 minutes)

By Yichen Zhu and Sarah Liu

Amid the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Chinese international students confront unforeseen virus challenges and government policy restrictions that drastically affect their approaches to their everyday lives.


Two Grandchildren, Two Grandmothers (15 minutes)

By Alice On and Henry Chen

Two students - one lived in America and the other in China - spend an afternoon listening to their grandmothers' stories and discover their families' histories.


The Industrial Cycle (10 minutes) 

By William Higbie and Even Wang

A poetic documentary exploring urbanized and post-industrialized landscapes. The documentary explores how humans try to conquer nature in a Chinese city named Da; and how nature conquers fortgotten urban spaces in Detroit. It's a love letter to nature's resilience.


Passing (13 minutes) 

By Mateusz Balcerek and Caiwei li

Two families grieving their losses during the pandemic: one living in a small village in Hubei, China, the other in the suburbs of Los Angeles, California; each honoring the memories of their loved ones in different ways. 


Letters from Afar (11 minutes) 

By Benjamin Blum and Zhang Qianqian

Two pen-pals, one on a grand adventure, and the other on an inward journey, discover the invisible forces shaping their lives. 


The Fleeing Moments of Boyhood (6 minutes) 

By Hanna Adams and Liu Yang

A pre-teen boy from the United States, and a pre-teen boy from China, discuss their hopes and fears, and find commonalities in a post-pandemic world.


Love Across (11 minutes) 

By Sze Yu Chen and Yuhan Ma 

A trans-media film about mainlining long-distance relationships during the pandemic.