‘A New Normal’ A Film by Nick Kuiper
At the height of the pandemic, Big Rapids-based filmmaker and Ferris State University Professor, Nick Kuiper grabbed his gear, and started filming. What he created was a documentary that follows students, faculty, staff, and administrators as they struggle to keep the campus open at the rural institution – Ferris State University.
He started production in February 2020, the height of COVID-19 in Michigan. “Cases were high, campus was socially distant and about 50% of all courses were offered online,” said Kuiper. “Initially, I hoped to interview a few people for a short film about how Ferris’s eLearning and IT staff were able to work quickly to get faculty and students set with technology after our state went on lockdown. Initially in March 2020, the idea was that we would be teaching and learning online for about two weeks. That all changed very quickly.”
After struggle after struggle, Kuiper was able to finish his film, A New Normal. ” I’m still thinking about that title. Sure, it’s a cliché (A New Normal) but in reality, that’s exactly what it was,’ Kuiper stated.