Maui News

Hawaiʻi International Film Festival and UH Academy for Creative Media launch student accelerator program

Listen to this Article
3 minutes
Loading Audio... Article will play after ad...
Playing in :00

Nonprofit Hawaii International Film Festival has partnered with the University of Hawaii’s Academy for Creative Media to provide access to networking, career insights and real-time interaction with industry professionals across the University of Hawai‘i’s 10 campuses for the first time.

The Hawai‘i International Film Festival and the University of Hawaii’s Academy for Creative Media System announced the launch of the inaugural HIFFxACM Accelerator, taking place summer 2023-2024.

This year-long partnership provides all students across the University’s ACM System access to cinema and media mentorship, networking, filmmaker visits to classes across UH campuses and a complimentary HIFF43 pass.

The HIFF43 pass welcomes students to all films and events at the anchor festival, free film screenings at the new UH West O‘ahu campus, and additional educational opportunities. 

The HIFFxACM Accelerator program will take place summer 2023-2024 as the start of a year-long partnership, designed to improve students’ cultural and visual literacy. All participating students will also receive complimentary passes to the upcoming HIFF43 festival.

“HIFF is honored to partner with the UH Academy for Creative Media system to offer this valuable opportunity to all ACM students across campuses in Hawai‘i,” said HIFF Executive Director Beckie Stocchetti. “This is an important opportunity for HIFF to continue our indelible work building the future of the film industry in Hawai‘i through increased involvement in supporting the careers of our emerging creators. We are grateful for the vision the UH ACM system leadership, administrators, and professors that are building inroads for students to access the local and international creative industry.” 

The HIFFxACM Accelerator program focuses on students attending college in Hawai‘i within the entirety of the Academy for Creative Media System through the University of Hawai‘i’s 10 campuses: ACM West O‘ahu, ACM Leeward Community College, ACM Kaua’i Community College, ACM Honolulu Community College MELE, ACM Maui College, ACM UH Hilo, ACM Manoa School of Cinematic Arts, ACM Kapi‘olani Community College New Media Arts, ACM Hawai‘i Community College Hilo, and ACM Windward Conservatory of Performing Arts.

Through the HIFFxACM Accelerator, ACM students will access increased awareness of career opportunities within the media field and hands-on experience tied to HIFF, the only statewide film festival in the United States, and the only Academy Award Qualifying film festival with a focus on Native Hawaiian-Pacific Islander content.


Opportunities such as the Cinema and Media Mentor connection and the HIFF Metaverse for students will allow students the chance to interface with industry professionals and network beyond their immediate community.  

“When we started ACM at UH Mānoa over 20 years ago, one of our first priorities was securing a relationship with the globally-recognized Hawai‘i International Film Festival to showcase our first ACM narrative short films from early students like Ty Sanga and Christopher Yogi” said ACM System Founder and Director Chris Lee. “Now, with ACM System supporting 16 programs at all ten UH campuses, we are thrilled to expand that partnership by helping to bring HIFF programming to multiple ACM campuses across the island chain and offering HIFF passes to all ACM students and faculty among many other benefits. In particular, I want to thank HIFF Director Beckie Stocchetti and HIFF Artistic Director Anderson Le for their longtime support for ACM System and in crafting the HIFF x ACM Accelerator.”

HIFF’s mission is to bring the best in international cinema to Hawai‘i, and to advance the understanding and cultural exchange among the people of Asia, the Pacific, and North America through the medium of film.


The primary objective for HIFFxACM Accelerator is to educate and empower Hawai‘i’s college students through unique programming that is designed to improve both their cultural and visual literacy while building connections with industry experts from around the world.

For more information regarding the 2023-2024 Accelerator Program, visit


Sponsored Content

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay in-the-know with daily or weekly
headlines delivered straight to your inbox.


This comments section is a public community forum for the purpose of free expression. Although Maui Now encourages respectful communication only, some content may be considered offensive. Please view at your own discretion. View Comments