Film-making Residency with Autism School: VSA Ohio Awards Matt and Nikki Swift

February 14, 2019

Film-making Residency with Autism School: VSA Ohio Awards Matt and Nikki Swift

AIA 2019 Residency at Bridgeway Academy featuring pictures of artists teaching

From August 2018 through March 2019, Film Studies Program Coordinator, Matt Swift, and his partner Nicolette Swift (OSU, History of Art and Film Studies 2005) have been participating as selected “Artists in the Classroom” for the Adaptation, Integration & the Arts program sponsored by VSA Ohio. For the residency experience, Matt and Nikki have designed curriculum, provided production equipment, and developed hands on experiences working with Bridgeway Academy on a weekly basis teaching two classes of 6-10th grade students with autism how to make short films. Bridgeway Academy is a central Ohio non-profit organization with a mission to inspire the potential and celebrate the ability of every child. It accomplishes this mission by providing outstanding educational and therapeutic services for children with autism and other developmental disabilities. In March the residency will end with a screening of the 5 short films for students, friends, and family at Bridgeway Academy.

From (VSAO)

VSA Ohio (VSAO), the state organization on arts and disability is pleased to announce schools selected for the Adaptation, Integration and the Arts (AIA) residency program during the 2018-2019 school year.

AIA partners teaching artists and educators in classrooms inclusive of students with and without disabilities to enhance teaching and learning through an arts-integrated residency and curriculum. Residencies are academic content standards-based, utilize Universal Design for Learning strategies, and reach grades PreK-12. The AIA residency program is a creative way to increase academic achievement; prepare students for life, work and post-secondary education; and enhance educator’s use of arts-integrated curriculum. Residency sites host community teaching artists for dozens of classroom hours and receive professional development trainings. Each residency represents an investment of approximately $6,000.

You can read more about the Adaptation, Integration & the Arts programs at VSA Ohios website.


The College of Arts and Sciences interviewed Matt and Nikki abotu their work witht he students of Bridgeway Academy. You can read that interview here - 

Ohio State filmmakers teach students with autism how to make movies


Recently NBC 4's Jerod Smiley and The Autism Puzzle featured Matt and Nikki's residency program as part fo their 30 minute broadcast for Autism Awareness Month.