Capital University students, staff and alumni earned four wins at the Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, and were nominated for a total of nine awards.

Capital media specialist and CapTV producer Dan Stemen ’16 won the professional Emmy for lighting for the project “Composite,” a compilation of his work including a video for the Film and Media Production program at Capital, the trailer for the feature-film “Cadia,” and a short narrative project.

Named College Student Production Award winners were students Makena Nowlin, senior Film and Media Production major from Columbus; Blake Sheely, senior Film and Media Production major from Cincinnati; and Michael Bernot, a Music Technology major from Findlay, Ohio. All three wins were connected to projects they completed in FMP 394, a creative immersion course taught spring 2019.

The additional five student production nominations were the result of student work produced in FMP 337 Media Management Promotion; FMP 333 Video Production; and FMP 433 Advanced Video.

“Capital is consistently competitive at the regional level, not only for our student work but also for our professional work. This makes a statement about the Film and Media Production program as well as the quality of Capital’s education as a whole,” said Dr. Betsy Pike, assistant professor of communication and director of Film and Media Production.

“Students and faculty are creating an environment of support and experimentation, creativity and empowerment, earning their projects regional and national attention. We are building a strong reputation as a stand-out, award-winning program.”

College Student Production Award Winners – NATAS Ohio Valley Chapter were earned in the following categories:


Animation/Graphics/Special Effects
Makena Nowlin (Jim Higgins, advisor)
“Ready, Set, Snow”

Animation/Graphics/Special Effects
Blake Sheely (Jim Higgins, advisor)
“Eyes on the Pies”

Michael Bernot (Jim Higgins, advisor)
“Eyes on the Pies”

Additional students nominated for College Student Production Awards were:


Music Video
Michael Bernot (Jim Higgins, advisor)
“JXHLANI – Hip Hop”

Short Form – Non-Fiction
Mary Clare Kunkel, a junior from the Cincinnati area, majoring in Film and Media Production; Brandon Ceollo, a junior Film and Media Production major and marketing minor from Pataskala; and Geoff Webb, a junior from Cleveland majoring in Film and Media Production and minoring in Computer Science (Sabrina Renkar, advisor) “Tugboat”

Blake Sheely and Sonata Wilson (Betsy Pike, advisor)
“What is a Non-Profit? and What to Expect When Working at a Non-Profit”

Michael Bernot (Jim Higgins, advisor)
“JXHLANI – Hip Hop”

“Employers in Columbus and around the four-state region submit their own work to the Ohio Valley NATAS, and recognize the great achievement of these awards,” Pike explained.

“This year, one of our local and talented alumni, Scott Baldner at Post House Creative, earned an Emmy for Writer – Short Form. Two Capital alumni won regional Emmys in 2019 – Dan (Stemen) and Scott (Baldner). This is a testament to the quality of the program and the talent it cultivates and refines.”

Capital began competing in the awards in 2016 and has won:

  • 1 Regional Emmy Award (Daniel Stemen)
  • 5 Student Production Awards
  • 10 Student Production Honorable Mentions


National Film Festival Selections
In addition, one student film and Immersion Documentary have been picked up by National Film Festivals:

Tugboat, a documentary created by Mary Clare Kunkel, Geoff Webb, and Brandon Coello, was named Official Selection of the Splice Film Festival

Tugboat (Claude & Sue Corty Award Entry, Student Documentary) -USA, and a finalist for the CLAUDE & SUDE CORTY AWARD for Best Film About Immigration

Capital in the Sixties, a documentary created by our Immersion Course Official Selection of the 2019 Film Festival of Columbus

Read about Capital’s 2018 Eyecatcher International Film Festival winners and Capital’s 2016 NATAS-Ohio Valley award winners.

The Student Production Award competition received a record number of entries from colleges, universities and high schools across the chapter’s four-state region, according to NATAS. Industry professionals judged and critiqued the entries which showcased a wide range of talent from these future broadcasters and media producers.

The Ohio Valley Chapter of NATAS is a professional service organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of television and related media, and to the promotion of creative leadership for artistic, educational and technical achievements within the television industry. The chapter presents the prestigious Emmy® Award to television professionals in 13 markets in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia; honors industry trailblazers with the Silver and Gold Circle; and makes scholarships available to students at colleges and universities throughout the region.