Welcome to the 7th ANnual SFC

The IOFF's International Student Film Competition (SFC) gives middle school and high school students from around the world a chance to demonstrate their filmmaking skills and tell their ocean stories.

Now in its 7th year, the SFC is a free program that showcases top student films during the festival.

This Year's Finalists

Congratulations to the 7th Annual SFC finalists from around the world, whose films will screen at 10:00 am Sunday, March 11, 2018:


Astronaut of the Ocean, by Alexander Luce, 7th grade, Escuela Bilingüe Internacional, Emeryville, CA

I Sea Pollution, by Dakota Peebler (age 11), Iseko (age 12), Carlos (age 15), Yarawe (age 16), & Dilluna (age 17), of Heirs To Our Oceans, Redwood City, CA

Polluted, by Yen Mao, 8th grade, A.P. Giannini Middle School, San Francisco, CA

The Story of a Plastic Bottle, by Cambria Bartlett, 8th grade, & Coralyne Taylor, 7th grade, homeschool, La Honda, CA

Strawbucks, by Helena Gans, Danielle Karr, Alexandra Chung, & Avery Benello, 7th grade, The Hamlin School, San Francisco, CA

Superfin, by Gabby Goss, 8th grade, Julia Morgan School for Girls, Oakland, CA


1958, by Catalina Lane & Annika Jackson, 12th grade, Tamalpais High School, Mill Valley, CA

Anchor Outs, by Sydney Politzer, 11th grade, Marin Catholic High School, Greenbrae, CA

Cruise Control, by Allison Lord, 9th grade, Westminster High School, Westminster, MD

Enjoy the Process, by Thomas Chang, Matthew Cho & Eva Chang, 11th grade, Mission San Jose High School, Fremont, CA

Freedom, by Kuzey Deniz Yılmaz, Efe Dikdaş, Ece Lara Tartar, Efecan Yavuzyılmaz, Cihan Turan, 11th grade, Acarkent Doğa IB School, Turkey

Haenyeo: Mermaids of Korea, by Sehee Park, 10th grade, Branksome Hall Asia, Jeju, South Korea

Ocean Investments, by Brendon Milan-Howells, 10th grade, The Branson School, Ross, CA

Old Reliable, by Amia McCombs, 12th grade, Providence High School, Burbank, CA

Over Fishing: A Danger to Our Oceans, by Suejin (9th grade), Alliyah (11th grade), Jerrett (10th grade) & Sumios (8th grade) of Heirs To Our Oceans, Redwood City, CA

Vanishing Act, by Georgia Lingerfelt, 10th grade, Alpharetta High School, Alpharetta, GA

Rules & Eligibility

The SFC is open to middle school and high school students (grades 6 through 12) from around the world. Films must be five minutes or less in duration, and touch upon some subject matter regarding the ocean. Open to middle school and high school students around the world, the SFC is a way for students to tell their stories about the ocean and explore the exciting world of filmmaking.

The general guidelines for entering the SFC are below. Visit the SFC Information Sheet for the complete rules. 


Films must be five minutes or less, and touch upon at least one of these ocean-related topics: 

  • Ocean environments    
  • Ocean wildlife
  • Ocean science    
  • Ocean cultures    
  • National Marine Sanctuaries
  • Ocean sports    
  • Ocean industries
  • Ocean history
  • Ocean conservation issues including climate change, pollution, overfishing, marine debris

Winning films will be chosen on the basis of creativity and the ability to tell a story that leaves the audience better informed about or moved by the ocean.


All submissions will be judged by an elite jury of professional filmmakers and ocean conservationists. The three top winners in each category — middle school and high school — will be eligible to win cash prizes up to $500. The top finalists in each category will have their films presented on the big screen during the SFC Program on Sunday, March 11, 2018 at 10:00 am.

The winners will be announced on stage at the end of the program. It's free to attend, so we hope to see you there! 

Filmmaking Resources

Find resources, photos and footage, and tips for making your film: download the SFC Film Resources guide.

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If you have any questions about the SFC, please email Jennifer Gamurot, SFC Coordinator, at jennifer@oceanfilmfest.org.


2017 Winning Films

You can get some inspiration by watching the winning student films from the 6th Annual International SFC in 2017.


1st Place:
Sea of Stories | Azure Allen | 10th grade, Home schooled, Conway, South Carolina

2nd Place:
Fisher | Ceren Dağlı | 11th grade, Doğa High School, Manisa, Turkey

3rd Place:
An Ode to the Deep | Lyshiel Aranal, Maika Marzo | 12th grade, Colegio San Agustin - Makati, National Capital Region (NCR), Philippines



1st Place: 
Hang Onto Your Butts!  Francisco School Sea Warriors: Nate, Marco, Ryan, Maria | 8th grade, Francisco Middle School, San Francisco, California

2nd Place:
Ocean Blue  Andrew Borgie and Alexander Roberts - 8th grade | Thomas Dull - 7th grade, Coronado Middle School, Coronado, California

3rd Place:
Beneath the Waves  Gabriella Goss | 7th grade, Julia Morgan School for Girls, Oakland, California




The Student Film Competition is proudly sponsored by
Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary
Many thanks to Cordell Bank for its generous support!