the 9th ANnual Student film competition

Submissions OPEN on Tuesday, September 10, 2019

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.  The top three winners in each category of middle school and high school competeD for cash prizes! 

The SFC is a free program that screened the top student films during the festival at a free program on Sunday, March 15, 2020.

The rules are easy and straightforward:

  • All films must be about the ocean

  • All films must be less than 5 minutes in length

  • Films must be made entirely by an individual student or a group of students

We look forward to getting your submission to hearing your story about the ocean! Here are the details:

  • 2020 Student Film Competition Information Sheet

  • 2020 Student Film Competition Rubric

  • 2020 GoogleDoc Registration Link: Register your film on this doc and it will ask you to upload your film to Dropbox

For more information or if you have any questions, please email our Student Film Coordinator, Kelsey Faamausili at


1ST PLACE: Crashing Waves, Kendra Leigh D. Osias, 8th Grade, Philippine Science High School -Eastern Visayas Campus, Philippines

2ND PLACE: Turtle Crisis, Chanya Veeranopparat, Punwa Weerapakkaroon, Tattiya Saipetch, 8th and 9th Grade, Pathomtham Homeschool, Bangkok, Thailand

3RD PLACE: Our Ocean
, Audrey Cheng, Noel Ayala, Avery Nordenfelt, Ally Flegel, Alayna Woodruff-Milner, 6th Grade, The Hamlin School, San Francisco, CA


Land Sea Pollution, Dakota Peebler, US, 8th grade, Indy Matiu, New Zealand, 9th grade, Jerrett Martin, Palau, 10th grade, Braelyne David, Palau, 8th grade, Blake Melairei, Palau, 11th grade, Kalaiang Ongino, Palau, 9th grade, Rakaunui Te Puni, New Zealand, 12th grade, Heirs to Our Oceans, USA

Mangrove Forest, Titus Saipetch, Paporn Phloi-montri, Supitcha Weerawong, Pathomtham Homeschool, Bankok, Thailand 


1ST PLACE: Why Seagoers Hate the Color Purple, Kaden Anderson, 10th Grade, El Molino High School, Forestville, CA

2ND PLACE: Plastic Sea, Gabby Goss, 9th Grade, Bishop O' Dowd High School, Oakland, CA

3RD PLACE: A Piece of Heaven on Earth, Jesslyn Tristan, Febby Valencia, and Jeanette Eileen, 11th grade, Santa Laurensia Senior High School, Tangerang Selatan, Indonesia


A Drop of the Ocean, An Le, 11th Grade, UWC ISAK, Japan 

Bring Back the Blue, Yunyi Wang and Wending Yu, 12th Grade, SuOn International Academy, Toronto, Canada

Joining Hands 2018, Molly Nichols and Kaitlin Miller, 10th Grade, Stockbridge High School, Stockbridge, MI

Kyklos, Justin Lee, Joshua Kim, Noah Pak, Mattia Cocchi, Jaydon Han, Noah Johansson, Sherly Prince, Tyson Park, 11th Grade, Yongsan International School of Seoul, South Korea

Our Hope: The Next Generation of Ocean Conservationists, Jaeyoung Kang, 11th Grade, Orange Lutheran High School, Orange, CA

The Ennore of Today, Abirami Subramanian & Arjun Subramanian, 10th grade, Homeschool, Bainbridge Island, WA

The Future of Sharks, Georgia Lingerfelt, 11th 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.


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 during the film festival.

The winners are announced on stage at the end of the program. It's free to attend!

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 Kelsey Faamausili SFC Coordinator, at