First Person Productions
The original storytellers
About First Person Productions
First Person Productions is a paid media internship aimed at empowering our young people to be the next generation of Native storytellers.
For too long, our people have been inaccurately portrayed in the media, but our internship program allows our young people to take ownership over their own stories. From filmmaking and podcasting to social media and marketing — FPP pays young people to learn the mechanics of media while increasing the visibility of Native peoples and ensuring accurate and authentic portrayals of our community.
FPP has 4 cohorts per year - three during the school year and one during the summer. Each cohort lasts approximately 8 -10 weeks and meets Monday - Thursday from 4:00PM-6:00PM or 9:30AM - 3:30PM in the summer. Interns get an hourly rate of $13.75 and must be 14 years or older to be eligible.
Winter 2023 Cohort
January 2nd - February 16th
Current enrollment status: FULL
Location: 1845 E Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55407
Meet Your Instructor
Binesikwe Means was born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota and is an enrolled citizen of the Oglala Lakota Tribe in Pine Ridge, South Dakota and a descendant of the White Earth Nation.
As a MIGIZI alumni herself, Binesikwe spent many years traveling to different tribal communities and working with elementary aged students on video projects. For the last 6 years she has dedicated her time and skills to advancing FPP and supporting her home community.
Binesikwe was recognized for her hard work, dedication, and mentorship as Step Up's Supervisor of the Year for 2022. This prestigious award is given to supervisors who have gone above and beyond to provide an exceptional experience for their Step Up interns, who nominate deserving supervisors. She develops incredible relationships and creates safer spaces for these talented students. She is committed to connecting the students to the community and fostering the next generation of storytellers. Binesikwe empowers these students by allowing them the space and opportunity to become their authentic selves. She has continually nurtured the development of American Indian youth.
"Binesikwe was really the first person I met who made me believe that I can actually become a filmmaker. With her i've met other Indigenous creatives who are living my dream. I get to experinece so many new opportunites that I never thought would be availbale for people like me" - MIGIZI Intern 2022
Our Past Work
Radio Camp 2023: Indigenous leaders seek justice, accurate representation
September 19th, 2023
This summer, a group of our interns participated in Radio Camp 2023 at MPR News, and we're thrilled to bring their experiences to you!
Within our community, there are numerous influential and noteworthy artists, activists, lawyers, and change-makers, who frequently remain overlooked by the mainstream media. However, our youth are learning the skills to ensure our stories are told in a good way.
Click this link to hear our youth interview legal scholar and Chief Justice on the Sisseton-Wahpeton Supreme Court, Angelique EagleWoman; musician Reuben Kitto Stately and artist Marlena Myles (Spirit Lake Dakota/Mohegan/Muscogee).
Phidamayaye ~ Miigwech ~ Thank you to our partners at MPR News, Radio Camp, KRSM, and ThreeSixty Journalism for empowering our youth with the tools to share our own stories.
Inside MIGIZI: A Journey by First Person Productions Interns
August 31st, 2023
We're thrilled to showcase the incredible work of our 2023 First Person Productions (FPP) interns! This summer marked a significant milestone for us, as it was the first time in the last six years that our talented interns took the reins to create content exclusively for MIGIZI.
Throughout their internship, these budding filmmakers gained hands-on experience in every aspect of video production. They learned to expertly handle Panasonic cameras, conducted insightful interviews with our dedicated staff, honed their video editing skills, and even dabbled in the art of crafting captivating audio clips. The result? Three outstanding informational videos that provide an in-depth look into MIGIZI and all of our programs. We're immensely proud of our interns for their dedication and creativity, and we can't wait for you to see the incredible content they've produced.
- Dakota and Gordy, 2023 FPP interns
June 2nd, 2023
Earlier this year, we met with a wonderful group of young Native women for our newly founded program, MIGIZI Speaks. MIGIZI Speaks is a WRITING CHANGE initiative from Estée Lauder Companies and National Youth Poet Laureate, Amanda Gorman to support grassroots organizations dedicated to advancing literacy as a pathway to equality, access, and social change, through the power of young voices.
With the help of our Lead Media Instructor, Binesikwe Means, and singer/song writer, Jamela Pettiford, our youth have been working together to build a divine sisterhood while exploring the topic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives.
You're Supposed to Be Ok
September 29th, 2022
In the summer of 2022, our First Person Productions interns dipped into the world of podcasting. From the bottom up, our interns created the name, logo, audio clips, and social media campaign for their podcast,"You're supposed to be ok." From relationships with their teachers, friends and family, to the impact isolation and the 2020 uprisings had on their mental health — tune in every Wednesday to hear young people’s perspective on how life changed during the pandemic.
August 27, 2019
This project investigates, documents and shares information and ideas concerning the revitalization of traditional food systems among the tribes of Minnesota and the upper midwest. The goal of the project is to introduce youth to traditional food knowledge and to spotlight current efforts in our community to change the status quo regarding food justice, food sovereignty, urban agriculture, as well as healthy foods and lifestyles.
August 31, 2018
Minnesota's Twin Cities has a lot of historical context and cultural significance to it that many people are unaware of. This interactive podcast will take you around the land before it was known as the Twin Cities and give you Native American insight and perspective.
Indigenous Food Labs
August 31, 2018
The Sioux Chef, Dream of Wild Health and Chef Brian Yazzie, along with many special guests, team up to present a day of indigenous food, culture and knowledge at the Great Minnesota Get-Together.
Think About It
August 31, 2018
Composting and recycling is very important and benefits our city! Learn more about the importance of recycling and composting through interviews conducted with local officials in Minneapolis. We further explore the cycles of recycling and composting as well.
Go Green and Stay Clean
August 21, 2018
The University of Minnesota Twin Cities and Edison High School explores renewable, green energy on their campuses.
Melannie Bice; Producer, Director, Camera, Editor
Adyn Pence; Animator
Isaiah Smith; Sound, Animator
Noah Kennedy; Camera, Editor, Writer
August 8, 2018
The decline in honey bees has a greater negative impact in our world more so than people think. Here are a few steps people can take to preserve the bee population.