College to screen award-winning documentary

Bloomfield College will provide current and future members of its community the chance to experience an award-winning documentary film Dec. 9, as the institution will host a screening of the popular production “First Generation” in the Westminster Arts Center’s historic Van Fossan Theatre.

The College will screen the film at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. The event will be open to prospective students from Newark Collegiate High School, Belleville High School, South Plainfield High School, Liberty Academy and the Paterson Board of Education high schools as part of Bloomfield’s enrollment management efforts, as well as current members of the institution’s student body, faculty and staff. Admission to the screening will be free of charge.

A feature-length documentary narrated by Golden Globe nominee Blair Underwood, “First Generation” tells the story of four high school students - an inner-city athlete, a small-town waitress, a Samoan warrior dancer, and the daughter of migrant field workers - who set out to break the cycle of poverty and bring hope to their families and communities by pursuing a college education.

Shot over the course of three years and featuring some of the nation’s top educational experts (including Richard Kahlenberg, The Century Foundation; J.B. Schramm, College Summit; Dr. Bill Tierney, University of Southern California), this 60 minute documentary explores the problem of college access faced by first-generation and low-income students and how their success has major implications for the future of the nation.

Winner of the 2012 Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema’s “Best Documentary” award, “First Generation” has also been an official selection of the 2012 Newport Beach and Riverside International Film Festivals.

“Hosting the film ‘First Generation’ is giving Bloomfield College the opportunity to give our community and prospective students the avenue to come together and share their stories, and their commitment to take charge of their future and be the first in their families to attend college,” Director of Admission Nicole Cibelli said. “With a large percentage of our students being first-generation college students, we thought it would be a documentary worth viewing as more and more students are continuing to strive to ‘break the mold’ and go to college.”

“Many of our students just need a place to share their voice, hopes and struggles with getting there. This first-time event is sure to leave a lasting impression on the entire campus community, and we are looking forward to sharing it with our guests.”

The Westminster Arts Center and Van Fossan Theatre is located at 449 Franklin Street in Bloomfield, N.J. For more information on “First Generation”, please visit

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