MCVTS film program, teacher honored by Garden State Film Festival


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The digital film program of the Middlesex County Vocational and Technical Schools will be center stage at the 20th annual Garden State Film Festival later this month.

MCVTS film instructor Louis Libitz has been named Educator of the Year by the festival, which will be held March 23-27 in Cranford and Asbury Park.

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Films by four of Libitz’s students are official selections in the high school portion of the festival: “Head in the Clouds” by Aldan Ortiz, a senior from Perth Amboy; “A Self Portrait” by Caitlin Bieri, a senior from Old Bridge; “Wander” by Marlayna O’Brien, a senior from Edison, and “Transcend” by Maya Zeidman, a junior from South Brunswick.

The student films will be screened at the Jersey Shore Arts Center in Asbury Park during the festival, which returns to in-person attendance this year, and later will be available virtually via streaming.

In addition, “Splinter,” a feature-length film directed by Tom Ryan, on which Libitz was director of photography and assistant editor, is a festival selection.

Libitz, a graduate in media arts at New Jersey City University in Jersey City, received his Master’s in Fine Arts in video art from Syracuse University in 2007. Working in experimental, narrative, and documentary styles, his video works have been exhibited in festivals and galleries nationally and internationally.

He has more than over 15 years’ experience teaching film, video and media arts at both the college and high school levels. He was assistant director and program coordinator of the Thomas Edison Film Festival – formerly the Black Maria Film Festival – and the New Jersey Young Filmmakers Festival.

He joined the faculty of the School of the Arts on the MCVTS East Brunswick campus in 2014.

In 2019 he was an honoree in the Governor’s Educator of the Year program. His students have consistently received recognition for their short films at numerous local, national, and international film festivals.

The MCVTS School of the Arts offers career majors in theater, dance, digital filmmaking, graphic design/commercial art and illustration, multimedia art and design, arts technology, and music performance and technology.

More information is available at


  • This information was provided by Middlesex County Vocational and Technical Schools.

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