New Immigrant & Refugee Visions Training and Production Team

Training Assistants

Pat Goudvis

Training Assistant

Pat’s professional career – first as a as a photojournalist and then as an independent filmmaker – has focused on the struggle for human rights and social justice in Central America. Her current project is the interactive digital documentary, “When We Were Young/There Was A War” ( It continues the stories of the teens portrayed in her 1993 documentary film, “If the Mango Tree Could Speak,” as it explores the Central American civil wars and their aftermaths, as well as the connection between the people and history of the US and Central America.

She is excited to be a part of NIRV and looks forward to all the stories that will come out of the training. She believes that empowering immigrants to tell their own stories is increasingly urgent in today’s political climate, in the US and globally.

Pat contributed to training presentations, mentored trainees through exercises, story development, production and post-production and documented many days of activities. 

Christine Arveil

Training Assistant

Boston-based artist Christine Arveil has been integrating painting and writing in her creations for 35 years. Born in France in 1958, Christine Arveil became the first of her working-class family to enter university, graduating with a master’s degree in Classics and French literature and later an MBA in Art management. In 1997, Arveil permanently moved to the United States. She integrates her life and artistic experiences into semi-abstract expressionist images for which she devised a unique painting technique and medium based on violin varnish. She is married with master bow maker and MacArthur Fellow Benoît Rolland. She has two children and twin grand daughters.

Christine wrote about and photographed the training activities, mentored trainees and contributed many delicious meals.

Denise Marika

Training Assistant

Denise Marika was an artist whose work ranged from installation and performance videos to art projects and documentary work in the field of social practice. Her exhibitions included solos shows at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston and MassMoCA as well as international galleries and screenings.

Denise died of a recurance of breast cancer in 2018. Her moral and financial support of the New Immigrant and Refugee Visions (NIRV) project were critical in making the training and the films a reality. Even as she struggled with breast cancer, she came regularly to the training sessions to share her wisdom, mentor our immigrant filmmakers, and inspire us all with her passion and joy. She is deeply missed.

Meet the Editors

Our trainee-filmmakers were mentored by the editors through the post-production process. (See NIRV Highlights #2). We were privileged to benefit from the wisdom, experience, and good humor of the following editors! In addition to being expert film editors, many are immigrants to America like our trainees. 
Peter Rhodes

Editor, (Originally from England), Internet Movie Database Listing

Peter is a 30+ year veteran editor who was trained at the BBC in London. He works in a broad variety of styles, ranging from cinema verité to historic re-creations to children’s films (which he also produces and directs). Peter moved to the U.S. in 1986, and has more than 50 credits for films that have appeared on PBS, the BBC and at major film festivals.
Alex Morelli


Alex is a filmmaker and teaching assistant in the Department of Visual and Environmental Studies at Harvard. His work resonates with the traditions of cinéma vérité, personal documentary, and experimental film. Committed to supporting underrepresented voices, he is currently in post-production on a hybrid short written by a Syrian refugee.
Monica Cohen

Editor (Originally from Colombia), The Boom House Productions

Monica is a filmmaker and editor with a focus on social issues. She is founder and owner of The Boom House Productions, which specializes in the creation of video and media campaigns for organizations and individuals working in the arts. The production house also includes a full-service music studio. Monica immigrated from Colombia in 2008; lived in New York City and came to Boston in 2015. Explore some of her work:

“Documentary film is a bridge between worlds that normally won’t know or acknowledge each other. Giving voice and the tools to immigrants and refugees, gives us a window to incredible places, cultures, people and extraordinary stories that could inspire us to better our selves, our communities and our world.”

Jorgy Cruz

Editor, (Originally from Dominican Republic), LongWood Media

Jorgy is a filmmaker, editor and co-founder of The Videology Company and LongWood Media. He went to New School University, and is currently working on a feature length documentary on a comedian with bipolar disorder (Funny Pains, Release Date: March 2018). Jorgy immigrated from the Dominican Republic, where he taught filmmaking, in 2008 to New York City and made Boston his home in 2016.

“I couldn’t help to think about all the people that reject immigrants and refugees without really thinking about it. They don’t give them a chance, if they could only see what I saw last night [at the NIRV training] maybe, just maybe they would change their minds and understand that these are people like you and me, trying to find happiness. Uganda, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Ethiopia, UK, USA, Cuba, so many countries together in one room, getting along, laughing out loud, having dinner, getting to know each other, all united by one thing: film and storytelling.” [from LongWood Media Blog]

Dan Girmus


Dan has bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Nebraska and completed his master’s in fine arts in documentary filmmaking at Emerson College in Boston. In 2016, he completed his observational nonfiction feature film “Oyate” about life on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in southwestern South Dakota. Dan was a critical team member in Community Supported Film’s Haitian project, helping to finish the films of the Owning our Future: Haitian Perspectives in Film series.
Beyza Boyacioglu

Editor (Originally from Istanbul, Turkey)

Beyza is a filmmaker and artist from Istanbul, currently based in New York. Her work has been shown in MoMA Documentary Fortnight, IDFA, RIDM, Anthology Film Archives, Morelia International Film Festival, Brooklyn Museum, Maysles Cinema, UnionDocs, Barbican Centre, DocYard at the Brattle, !f Istanbul and many other venues and festivals. She was a part of MIT Open Documentary Lab between 2014-2018. She was a fellow at UnionDocs and Flaherty Seminar, and currently a part of Chicken and Egg Diversity Initiative and Greenhouse Program for Middle East and North African filmmakers. She holds an MSc in Comparative Media Studies from MIT and an MFA in Computer Art from SVA.
Heather Cassano


Heather is a documentary filmmaker whose work spans multiple media platforms. She has presented her work as installation art, short and feature films, and online interactive media. Heather is originally from Maryland, but has been influenced by her time studying cinema and photojournalism in North Carolina and Copenhagen. Her films are reminiscent of the cinéma vérité movement, adopting a patient invested approach with her subjects. Her most recent film, The Limits of My World, is deeply personal focusing on her younger brother who was diagnosed with autism at the age of two. Heather recently received her MFA in Film and Media Art and now teaches at Emerson College.
Devvrat Mishra

Editor (Originally from India)

Devvrat Mishra, born in Lucknow, India is a audio-visual storyteller who started making digital content which grew out of his interest in writing. With a MFA in Film/Video from Massachusetts College of Art and Design, he has extended his practice to include super8, 16mm film, and digital photography. His work mostly deals with the social and sub-cultural intricacies that exist in India and have been previously screened and awarded at Kolkata International Film Festival, Kolkata International Cult Film Festival, Viacom 18’s Cineshorts 2014 (TOP 50), Elche International Independent Film Festival to name a few.
Zayde Buti

Editor and CSFilm Creative and Program Coodinator (Originally from Mars)

Zayde Buti works as an artist, teacher and video editor in the Boston area. His artwork is a meeting ground for music, comedy and performance art ( In addition to his role with CSFilm, Zayde gives private, in-home guitar lessons and teaches digital media workshops at Massachusetts College of Art and Design, where he graduated with a BFA from the Studio for Interrelated Media (SIM) in 2010.