• Employee Resources
  • Language

Originators of ‘Nighthawk Man’ astonished by work of successors

HIGHLANDS RANCH – Two college students were among the crowd at the gala unveiling Rocky Heights Middle School’s (RHMS) third full-length film, “Nighthawk Man Origin,” amazed at how their successors had brought new, big-screen life to their creation.

Nicole Givin, now a senior and television producer at Boston College, and Annie Meyer a senior at the University of Colorado, Boulder came up with the idea of Nighthawk Man about a decade ago while seventh-grade students at RHMS. 

“They have just taken it and have done incredible things. I would have never thought in a million years that they would have done this,” Meyer said.

READ MORE: Rocky Heights Middle School students produce original motion picture

The caped-crusader was originally created for a Public Service Announcement (PSA) project in a multi-media class.

 “Mr. [Kelly] Corr was running around in one of his costumes, so we asked him if he would be in our movie. It was funny and everyone loved Mr. Corr,” Meyer explained. “It turned into this huge thing because everyone wanted more.”

Meyer and Givin participated in an independent study with RHMS technology teacher Scott Melanson and their project was to create a series of PSAs about everything from littering to bullying.

“We won the Parker Film Festival in the eighth grade,” Meyer said. “We really wanted to get onto RCTV (Rock Canyon Television), so that was our big “in” for RCTV.”

The two former-students are amazed at what the students are doing in the RHMS program today. Three years in a row the students have produced full-length films, along side teachers Scott Melanson, Tim Ryckman, and Maclain Looper. The first two were based on the Hollywood films “The Breakfast Club” and “Mean Girls.” 

READ MORE: Movie produced and starring middle school students premieres 

WATCH: Middle School Students Shoot Full-Length Film

The latest was a completely original creation. Looper wrote the screenplay and students took the lead in photography, editing and special effects.

“I am just so impressed with what everyone is doing at Rocky Heights with technology, because we had a good program when we were there,” Meyer said.

“I am so jealous,” added Givin. “My studio at college right now is nothing compared to this.”

Meyer and Givin say they know the skills the RHMS students learning today will help them regardless of what profession they decide to go into—but especially film and broadcast.

“What they are doing at the middle school is something they’ll get to take away. If they want to do it in high school, if they want to pursue it afterwards, it is an invaluable experience,” Givin said.

The lessons learned during this effort will now be shared District-wide. Scott Melanson will be working to share that expertise and create training opportunities for with teachers and students, as DCSD’s Student Media Coordinator.

July 16, 2014 | By SCPaulsen | Category: Rocky Heights Middle School, Middle School Education

District News

kids running outside as part of a race

DCSD is requesting parent input on the health and wellness of our students. Last year, DCSD received a large planning grant from Colorado Health Foundation in an effort to assess how the district supports students through the lens of the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child model (WSCC). The mission of this grant is to review the current state of DCSD's student health and wellness program, and then formulate a three to five-year plan based on stakeholders’ needs, the latest research, and best practices. As part of this process, we would like your input.

How are we doing?

We want to hear from you! How often do you prefer to receive email newsletters from DCSD? How can we improve the news and information you receive? This brief survey should only take a minute or two of your time. Thank you for giving us your input!

Tell us what you think, here!


glowing purple lights hover over trays of seedlings in a dark room

It may look like a plain, white shipping container was just parked on the backyard grounds of Mountain Vista High School. The contents of the container are anything but plain, though. Walking inside the container, different colors of ambient lighting glow, futuristic-looking equipment and tall towers are suspended from the ceiling, and the humidity level is set to 70 percent. The container has been recycled into a new kind of learning opportunity for students.