VA Central

VA Central Ohio Healthcare System

Using animation, film, and podcasting, students collaborate with Veterans to tell their stories about the healing power of art-making.

Film & Video

Graphic Design

Jordan Bell
Adjunct Faculty, Podcasting
Assistant Director of Career Services

Andy Friz
Associate Professor, Animation

Bekah Nunn
Former Adjunct Faculty, ​​​​Animation

Stephanie West
Visiting Faculty, Film & Video

Corporate & Community Partnerships

Learning Partner: VA Central Ohio Healthcare System Using animation, film, and podcasting, students collaborate with Veterans to tell their stories about the healing power of art making.

"Think about the world 'destroy.' Do you know what it is? De-story. Destory. Destory. You see. And 'restore.' That's re-story. Do you know that only two things have been proven to help survivors of the Holocaust? Message is one. Telling their story is another. Being touched and touching. Telling your story is touching. It sets you free."

Francesca Lia Block Author

Feature Length Film

Re-Story: Transforming Veteran Stories into Art feature length film, 2020 [48 minutes]


During the four-month long partnership, 28 CCAD students from four classes in documentary video, podcasting, and animation were paired with 21 VAI participants to share Veterans’ stories and explore how their creative efforts as artists have helped them to process their individual military experiences. Before working with the Veterans, students received training from VAI Program Coordinator Heather Seymour and VA Patient Advocate Tyler Strine on empathic listening and military culture, ethics, and privacy. The overall project, dubbed “Re-story,” gave Veterans an opportunity to retell or “re-story” aspects of their lives both in and out of the military and reflect on how making art transforms these narratives. In addition, Veterans’ poems from the VAI poetry workshops at the Franklin County Correction Center were used to create short animations. The Veterans were consulted throughout the project and received a copy of their stories.

The Results

The short films, excerpted podcasts, and animations were combined and edited to make a 45-minute documentary film by a CCAD alum. Re-story: Transforming Veteran Stories into Art kicked off the National Veterans Film Festival Presents series on Nov. 13–15, 2020 during National Veterans and Military Families Month. The premiere of the film was followed by a panel discussion with several CCAD faculty and students, as well as Veterans and VA staff. Viewers around the country tuned in virtually to watch the film premiere. The film was awarded two Silver 2021 Telly Awards, which honor excellence in video and television across all screens.

"Re-story allowed a unique space for intergenerational dialogue that bridges the racial, gender, and socioeconomic divides through the commonality of making art. We started with a question, 'How can collaborative creative storytelling connect Veterans and civilians across generations?' The answers are in the works themselves. The common thread is that no life experiences define us, we are all dynamic. We all want to be heard, understood, and this platform of storytelling is essential in a digital world."

Heather Seymour VA Central Ohio Healthcare System Director of Whole Health Community Partnerships and Communications, and Founder of the Veteran Arts Initiative

Short Films

View Playlist

On My Terms: The Life and Artistry of Leni D. Anderson

Directed by Madison Van Buren featuring Veteran Leni D. Anderson, U.S. Army.

Without a Scratch: The William Rogers Story

Directed by Luke McLaughlin featuring Veteran William Rogers, U.S. Army.

Breaking Perception

Directed by Austin Black featuring Veterans Armond Goss (U.S. Air Force), Hannah Rodas (U.S. Air Force), and Veronica Shields (U.S. Army).

The Spiritual Revolution of Stephen D. Napper

Directed by Janelle Moorman and Bethany Mercer featuring Veteran Stephen D. Napper, U.S. Army, National Guard.

Portrait of Mary Skrenta

Directed by Alyssa Morris featuring Veteran Mary Skrenta, U.S. Army.


View PlaylistA Reason to Fight | CCAD Animation

Animation by Troy Belko. "A Reason to Fight" A poem by Veteran Stephen Yarger, U.S. Army.

Marion Risberg | CCAD Animation

Podcast by Maddison Wilson and Sarah Seymour, Motion Graphics by Samuel Koh, featuring Veteran Marion Risberg, U.S. Marine Corps.

Bernie Pontones | CCAD Animation

Podcast by Aaron Bell, Motion Graphics by Samuel Koh, featuring Veteran Bernie Pontones, U.S. Army.

Patrick Paquin | CCAD Animation

Podcast by Alexa Buck, Motion Graphics by Samuel Koh, featuring Veteran Patrick Paquin, U.S. Navy, U.S. Navy Reserves, U.S. Air Force Reserves.

Stanley Vivens | CCAD Animation

Podcast by Daniel Prendergast, Motion Graphics by Samuel Koh, featuring Veteran Stanley Vivens, U.S. Army.

Greg West | CCAD Animation

Podcast by Taylor Scalzo and Kenneth Tyree, Motion Graphics by Samuel Koh featuring Veteran Greg West, U.S. Army.

Stephen Yarger | CCAD Animation

Podcast by Fredi Bockover, Motion Graphics by Samuel Koh featuring Veteran Stephen Yarger, U.S. Army.

Not My Neighborhood: A Retelling of Mr. Rogers' Time In Paris | CCAD Animation

Animation by Aspyn Chisesi featuring Veteran William Rogers, U.S. Army.

The Mask We Wear | CCAD Animation

Animation by Amanda LaRocco. "The Mask We Wear" A poem by Veteran Daniel Middleton, U.S. Marine Corps.

"...It was fascinating to see art students and Veterans bond over a shared love for creativity, and use it as an icebreaker in understanding the impact of the military experience. I hope by sharing their stories that others will feel that bond, too."

Jordan Bell Adjunct Faculty, Podcasting Assistant Director of Career Services
20200203 MDES Veterans Project 01

"As I listen to my interview with Professor Lisko, I am constantly humbled by the way he speaks of his life, and the impact World War II had on him. He is truly an amazing person who has made me look at life from a whole different perspective. Professor Lisko's story reminds me that no matter how bad things get, the world will be okay."

Antonio Sais Advertising & Graphic Design, 2021

CCAD Prepares Students For Careers

You can find our alumni using their creative skills in small businesses, multinational corporations, nonprofits, and even in such fields as banking, healthcare, and insurance.