The Migrant Experience

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September 24, 2020
5:00pm Eastern Time
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Stories of the migrant experience illustrate the challenges of weighing complex risks, preserving memory, and building community in unfamiliar countries. Several Pulitzer Center Reporting Fellows have reported on these stories of migration and experiences of place. These narratives explore the places migrants find, shape, and return to through their relationships, work, and civic engagement while maneuvering the political and societal forces that often constrict their movements.

Join the Pulitzer Center for The Migrant Experience: A Reporting Fellow Virtual Film Festival. Films include:

"Home to Home: How a Yemeni Refugee Found Love in South Korea," directed by 2019 Northwestern University in Qatar Reporting Fellows Juyoung Choi & Saad Ejaz,

"Holding Fire," directed by 2019 Columbia University Reporting Fellows Hana Elias & Eleonore Voisard, and

"Guanajuato Norte," directed by 2018 Columbia University Reporting Fellows Sana A. Malik & Ingrid Holmquist.

A live Q&A with the film directors will follow this screening.

Video Descriptions


Welcome to the first Pulitzer Center Virtual Film Festival!

Home to Home: How a Yemeni Refugee Found Love in South Korea

Mohammed Ameen came to Jeju Island, South Korea, as a refugee in 2018. There, he met Ha Min-Kyung, who hired him as a chef. She wanted him to help run the new restaurant she had opened for the Muslim refugees from Yemen. As they worked together, Ameen and Min-Kyung fell in love, and eventually got married. This is how it happened.

Holding Fire

Somia Elrowmeim is a Yemeni immigrant—and American citizen—fighting for the rights of Muslims in South Brooklyn at a time of unprecedented Islamophobia. The documentary "Holding Fire" follows her trajectory as a rising activist. During the 2018 midterm elections, Somia works to galvanize the Arab and Muslim vote to flip one of the last Republican seats in New York City. As she gains recognition and considers a bigger role in politics, she must also contend with gender expectations from a conservative society. This film by Hana Elias and Eleonore Voisard provides a behind-the-scenes look at a grassroots organization and a new generation of Muslim women whose activism may determine the future of a community.

The Sacrifices an Agricultural Worker Makes for His Family | The New Yorker Documentary

Though he grows vegetables on a Connecticut farm, Wenceslao Contreras's life remains in Guanajuato, Mexico, with the family he sees just once a year. Still haven’t subscribed to The New Yorker on YouTube ►► The Sacrifices an Agricultural Worker Makes for His Family | The New Yorker Documentary

55min 10sec


  • Pulitzer Center

    The Pulitzer Center raises awareness of underreported global issues through direct support for quality journalism across all media platforms and a unique program of education and public outreach.

  • Co-Moderator Avatar
    Naomi Andu

  • Co-Moderator Avatar


  • Panelist Avatar
    Juyoung Choi


    Juyoung Choi is a Media Industries and Technology major at Northwestern University in Qatar. Originally from South Korea, she grew up in a multicultural background, having lived across Australia, China, UAE, and Oman. This diverse upbringing has led to her passion for exploring stories in the Middle East and South Korea where she considers her true home to be. Juyoung is a fearless documentary filmmaker who isn't afraid of exposing hidden truths and healing the wounds of marginalized minorities through her work.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Saad Ejaz


    aad is a journalism major at Northwestern University in Qatar, with a minor in Middle East Studies. During his time in the Gulf, Saad has reported extensively on blue collar workers from South Asia and East Africa. His work takes a special interest on the impact of migration and government policy on the health, identity, and mental well-being of these workers. In 2019, Saad was selected as a mental health journalism fellow for the Carter Center. In his free time, Saad likes to tinker with old cameras, drink chaaye, and reminisce about Pakistan.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Hana Elias


    Hana Elias is a documentary filmmaker and journalist in New York. Elias’s first short documentary, ‘The Rooftops of Jerusalem," followed young Palestinian parkour players, and was selected for festivals internationally in 2014. Since then, she is driven to focus on stories about the complexity of belonging, for those growing up in places where their identity and home are contested and politicized. Elias has achieved a master's degree at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, and has completed her short documentary "Holding Fire" with the support of the Pulitzer Center. Elias is currently working as an associate producer for Documentaries.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Eleonore Voisard


    Eleonore Voisard is a French journalist and filmmaker currently working as a producer for BBC Reel. Voisard graduated from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism where she completed a specialization in documentary filmmaking and co-produced her first short film "Holding Fire" with the support of the Pulitzer Center. Prior to that she has worked with Agence France Press newswires and production companies in Paris and the Middle East. She covers immigration, gender, and religion with a focus on visual storytelling.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Sana A. Malik


    Sana A. Malik is a Pakistani-Canadian filmmaker and journalist who was most recently an associate producer for a Frontline PBS documentary on police brutality. Sana has also produced work for MTV, the BBC, and the CBC. Sana's documentary, Guanajuato Norte, which she co-directed with Ingrid Holmquist, was a New Yorker Magazine Documentary selection and a winner of the 2019 BAFTA Student Film Award. Sana has recently completed her first fictional short about a young Afghan refugee which she wrote and directed. Prior to a full-time switch to filmmaking, Sana worked in gender and public health in Tanzania, the UK, and Canada. She lives in New York and is a graduate of the Columbia University School of Journalism.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Ingrid Holmquist


    Ingrid Holmquist is a filmmaker and video journalist from Nebraska, based in NYC. She most recently worked as an Associate Producer on eight feature-length historic documentaries produced by CNN Specials as well as an observational film produced by HBO Max/CNN Films that followed the women covering the 2020 presidential election. Independently, with her production partner Sana A. Malik, Ingrid produced, shot, and edited the student BAFTA Award-winning documentary, Guanajuato Norte, which was supported by the Pulitzer Center. The film went on to screen multiple film festivals, including DOC NYC, and was acquired by The New Yorker. Ingrid got her master’s degree in journalism with a focus on documentary filmmaking from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and studied journalism and Spanish at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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The views and opinions expressed in this online screening are those of the presenters and participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ITVS, public broadcasting, or any entities hosting the screening.