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Film Director Petter Holmsen Named Class of 2014 Valedictorian at LIU Post


Communications & Marketing, LIU,
PetterPetter Holmsen, a film major with a passion for performing arts, is the valedictorian of the LIU Post class of 2014. He will deliver the valedictory address at commencement for LIU Post on Friday, May 9, on the Great Lawn. Holmsen, an exceptional student and leader, was nominated not just for his film work, but also for being a role model and inspiration to fellow students

A Norway native, Holmsen knew he wanted to come to the U.S. to pursue a career in film making from a young age. After visiting several universities, he chose to attend LIU Post for the depth of the film program at the School of Visual Arts, the wide experience of faculty, and the opportunity to start making films in his first semester. He took advantage of this and began creating films right away, and has since created numerous internationally recognized short films, several of which have won prestigious awards. His film, Have You Heard, won first place at the Videomarathon held in Copenhagen in 2012.

His goal while studying at LIU Post was to unify the students from various departments in the School of Visual Arts through collaborative projects. He accomplished this by incorporating dance students, media and broadcasting students, graphic design students, art students, and actors from the theatre department in most of his short film projects.

Holmsen took many courses outside of his major, in order to gain a greater understanding of all aspects of art. “Taking a diverse course added priceless value to my education here at LIU Post. I will carry the lessons learned from my professors with me for life,” said Holmsen. “But what I have learned most is that working hard at what you are passionate about and applying discipline really pays off.”

“Petter has strong drive and ambition, and has pushed himself and his fellow students to always strive for high quality work,” said Susan Zeig, professor and director of the film program in the School of Visual and Performing Arts at LIU Post. “We are incredibly proud that he has been named valedictorian of the class of 2014.”

He began applying for grants for his thesis project in his freshman year and by 2013, had enough of a budget to fly both the crew and actors, many of whom were fellow students or alumni from LIU Post, to Iceland to film My Icelandic Brother. His film, which tells the story of two brothers who never knew each other until they met shortly after their father’s death, is currently being watched by the jury of the Oscar Academy for the 41st Student Academy Awards.

The valedictorian is selected by a committee comprised of faculty and administrators. Candidates are nominated by faculty members and judged on their GPA, a personal essay, recommendations and an interview with the selection committee.

Posted 04/22/2014

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