Spotlights

Jessica Guerriera, WPUNJ ’17

Jessica Guerriera is a senior at William Paterson University majoring in Media Production and a minor in Public Relations. Guerriera currently interns at Live with Kelly in New York City and has incredible tips for future interns and provides insight on her day to day tasks at Live with Kelly!

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Courtesy of Jessica Guerriera

Where are you currently interning and how long have you been there?

I am interning at Live! with Kelly and Ryan. I started January 3, 2017, when it was still Live! with Kelly, and will be finished on May 24, 2017.

What is your major and minor? Do they have anything to do with what you’re doing at your internship?

My major is communications with a concentration in Media Production and I have minor in Public Relations. They absolutely have everything to do with my internship considering I am a production assistant at Live. My classes and my work with WPTV have all helped tremendously with this internship!

What is a day in the life of an intern? Do your tasks vary or stay the same on a day to day basis?

For the most part my task stay the same from day to day. Here is a detail description of what I do on a daily basis (this is from my internship paper). All interns at Live must work 2 days a week.

When I am a studio intern I arrive at 7am where I bring newspapers up from the lobby, open up the office closet, refill all printers in the copy room with paper, put 3 waters in each dressing room for the guest, stock the guest co-host’s mini-fridge with water, check to make sure catering has arrived by 7:15am, and most importantly continuously check the intern gmail account and print out news items sent from the host chat producer for the day, which changes from day to day. Once all emails have been looked at either the 7am intern or the 8am intern should grab the talent logs for that days guest and give them to the audience coordinator, Monique. As well sometimes producers will ask for special favors so a few times I have gone to greet guests from the garage and bring them to to their assigned dressing room, or I have steamed guest clothing. I’ve met a lot of the guest co-host like Jerry O’Connell and Christian Slater. The studio intern should also check the studio to make sure there are cue cards & markers on the set. Around 8:30am as the studio intern I head down to the studio where I bring down the water/cage keys, the producers laptop, a set of audience tickets, and the headset for the production assistant, Jim. From 8:30am to 9am it is the studio interns responsibility for assisting the audience coordinators bring in the audience as well as to give all audience members who is over 18 years old and a non employee for Disney/WABC an audience ticket. During the show I stand off to the side with the production assistant and if a producer needs anything I am responsible for running to go get it. After the show everything is immediately brought back upstairs. Once everything is brought back I head back downstairs to the dressing rooms and sweep and tidy them up re-stock water if necessary for post tape, clean up food and bring leftovers to the office, as well as stop by and pick up CDs from the 2nd floor Audio both to give to Lori (another producer). The remainder of the day is then spent in the office answering phones, getting mail, checking emails, and helping producers in anyway needed.

As an office intern I arrive at 8am instead of 7am. For office days I stay in the office all day long and my day to day usually consist of typical office task. I immediately log in to the computer and check the intern gmail account. As well as usually pull talent logs if the studio intern hasn’t done so already. Afterward I hang out in the office ready to help any producers with anything last minute or to steam clothing, and greet guest. The remainder of the day is spent answering the phones, burning that day’s show onto a DVD, printing & cutting out 2 sets of audience tickets, as well as checking the INBOX for comments, to create a comment sheet, and get it approved by Jason by 3pm. Once the comments are approved I deliver them to Michael Gelman (Executive Producer), Bill Cabral (talent Booker), Art Moore, and Linda Henderson. As an office intern I also continuously pick up mail from 4th floor mail room, as well as drop off mail. I am also responsible for cleaning newspaper/food area in copy room/organize paper, restock cue cards when their is a delivery, sign for packages and distribute them to the producers. And, most importantly be as helpful to the producers as possible. As an intern it is my direct job to help all producer with whatever they need help with. Many times that means helping research guest and making fact sheets to send to producers, as well as going through guest’s social media accounts and finding pictures for producers to use. As well as researching and helping out with other odd segments producers are producing for the week, like cleaning and organizing hacks to games the host can play with the guest. As well as being available and comfortable to go on runs for producers outside of the office to get all different types of things like clothes and food for different segments. I find everything I do to be extremely meaningful and I am so grateful for the experience!

How exactly did you pursue this internship? What was the process like from applying to then getting the internship?

I pursed this internship by simply applying to the WABC-TV Spring Internship found on their website. I have been a long time fan of the show and I remember watching Live with Regis and Kelly and saying one day I want to work here. The show inspired me to get into TV in the first place. A friend had applied to this internship the semester before and when they told me about the internship being available for the next semester I knew I had to apply! The process for this internship was interesting. First, I submitted my application, resume, and a personal statement to the internship coordinator. I then waited for an email saying whether or not I was invited to interview for the position. Once I got the email confirmation I then moved ahead with the interview. The interview was actually an interview night for all WABC internships in all the departments. I like to describe it as a speed dating kind of thing. Basically producers and heads of departments sit around the cafeteria at WABC and interns take a number and wait to be interviewed for whatever position they were called back for. I was called back for a Live interview and a Operations, Promotions, and Special Programming interview. I had my Live interview first. I was one of the first interns to walk in and I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Executive Producer Michael Gelman, which was super nerve racking, but also so exciting at the same time. The interview lasted about 5-10 minutes and once we were done I went on to my second interview. After the interview night I got a call from the internship coordinator about 2 weeks later saying I was selected to be an intern for Live with Kelly. Needless to say I was super excited and accepted right away.

What are your end goals when it comes to your career? Do you believe your internship has helped you get closer to those goals?

My end goals for my career is to become a TV producer, whether it is for a Live daytime talk show or a scripted drama I want to be some sort of producer and preferably an executive producer one day. I believe this internship will definitely get me closer to my goals. I think everything I am learning is really beneficial, as well as the connections I am making. I think just having the name Live with Kelly on my resume will really open doors for me moving forward.  

If you could have any job you wanted after you graduate, what would it be and why?

If I could have any job I wanted after graduation? Wow, that is a hard question I’ll go with something a little realistic. My dream job would be becoming a production assistant for either Live with Kelly and Ryan, or it would be being a production assistant for a scripted TV show filming in NYC. Either something for Netflix or one of the major networks (ABC, NBC, CBS…etc.) I would love to stay at Live with Kelly and Ryan since I am loving my internship and just really enjoy the environment. But, I would also love to work for a scripted show just because I really love scripted shows and it has been my dream for so long.

What advice would you give to a student that wants to pursue a career in entertainment or more specifically production? Is there a specific path they should take?
My advice I would give to students is to stand out, but remain true to yourself. I would say be ready for anything and be super flexible. Entertainment is a fast pace world so you need to be able to adapt and think on your feet. You need to be as helpful as possible and remember its okay to ask questions, but also use common sense! You have to have thick skin and not take things personally either. In entertainment you will work with some real difficult people whether it is your higher ups or actual celebrities you have to treat everyone with a high level of respect, and most importantly need to be able to take whatever someone throws at you and keep moving forward. Another piece of advice is to not get distracted by the celebrity and remember you have a job to do! I think if someone remembers all of this they will be able to succeed. I don’t think there is any specific path to take I think it all depends on the person. I do think though that if something inspires you, whether it be a TV show, film, radio, or PR look and see if they are hiring interns and just do it. Do whatever you can and work your way up and show someone you have what it takes and make connections. This business is all about who you know and connections are the only way to succeed. I wish everyone the best of luck moving forward with whatever they plan to do in life! 

 

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How To's

Tips for Latino Students and Parents on How to Get Involved in Entertainment Internships

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According to PRSA, “ethnic groups make up 30 percent of the U.S. population yet only 10 percent of minorities work in public relations”. That is an extremely low number! There should be more minority representation in certain fields such as public relations but many times it all has to do with the exposure Latinos encounter. For example, I am a first generation public relations student with family members who only see value in the medical field jobs. Entertainment is an extremely competitive field that requires experience at media companies that many times may not be in full reach to low income Latino students. I never grew up knowing anyone who worked in entertainment, everything I did was trial and error. Since most entertainment internships are unpaid, only those who can afford to pay for an internship and experience can get those internships. Latinos have to go an extra mile to catch up to fellow students who want to pursue a career in entertainment. Below are some tips for Latino students and their parents on how to get involved in entertainment internships!

  1. Tell Parents About Different Job Fields: The most important thing Latino students should be doing is educating their parents on the different job fields they can be in. If you want to work in PR or marketing you should educate your parents on the field and why it is a lucrative job field!
  2. Network: The field of entertainment is all about who you know! I never knew anyone who worked in entertainment until I got into college and began interning. Make sure to get to know people who may help you get connected to your favorite media company. For example, when I worked at a gym I met a member that was friends with an executive at Rolling Stone Magazine. They connected me with the executive and hoping to someday use that connection for a job.
  3. Join Latinos In Media Networking Organizations: Joining networking organizations that are for Latinos and from Latinos is a great way to meet Latinos in high positions in media companies and entertainment all together. These Latino executives can get to know you and someday give back to you by helping you get a job at their company or internship. There is nothing better than seeing powerful Latinos help aspiring professionals in their quests. I hope to someday get to a position where I can inspire and help young and passionate Latinos get into the entertainment field. Representation matters!

For Latino Parents:

Understand Your Children’s Dreams: My mother always wanted me to be a nurse or dentist because those were the field’s most immigrant parents felt would make their children successful. When I told my parents I wanted to work in PR, she didn’t understand what it was and why I didn’t want to follow her dreams. Parents, give your children’s dreams a chance, they will work even harder to prove to you they are meant to work in entertainment and communication! Jus know that your children are pursuing a job in a very competitive job market that is many times even harder for them because of the opportunities they may have lacked.

 

Spotlights

Luisa Salazar, WPUNJ ’17

Luisa Salazar is a senior at William Paterson University, with a major in communication and a minor in media production and communication studies. Salazar discusses her passion for radio and her current music programming internship at SiriusXM Radio.

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Where are you currently interning and how long have you been there?

I intern at SiriusXM and have been here for 4 months

What is your major and minor? Do they have anything to do with what you’re doing at your internship?

My major is communication and my minor is media production and communication studies. As a media production major I’m specialized in audio production. Everything that I’ve learned at school – I’ve applied to my day-to day at SiriusXM.

What is a day in the life of an intern? Do your tasks vary or stay the same on a day to day basis?

My tasks vary but they all relate to music programming. I typically help load voice tracks, edit interviews, ingest music among other things. I’m also in charge of doing the phone screening for two live shows.

How exactly did you pursue this internship? What was the process like from applying to then getting the internship?

I found the recruiter’s email and contacted her about my interest in the internship. I had a phone interview with the internship recruiter and then an in person interview with my music programming managers. After I followed up with the recruiter was when I found out that I had gotten the internship.

What are your end goals when it comes to your career? Do you believe your internship has helped you get closer to those goals?

Ultimately I want to host a morning radio show and I do think that this internship is a step in the right direction.

If you could have any job you wanted after you graduate, what would it be and why?

After graduation an ideal job would be a co-host of a morning radio show. This is what I’ve worked towards for these last four years of my college career.

What advice would you give to a student that wants to pursue a career in entertainment or more specifically production? Is there a specific path they should take?

Some advice i would give would be, if you love radio for all the right reasons (you love music, sharing ideas with others) then go for it – but if you go into it for fame or money, you will quickly fail.

 

Spotlights

Nicole Darrah, WPUNJ 2016

Nicole Darrah graduated William Paterson in 2016, majoring in Broadcast Journalism. She currently works as a Ticker Writer and Breaking News Producer at Fox News and has interned at large media companies such as VH1 and ABC. Darrah tells reader her experience as an intern and advice on keeping your dream alive in the entertainment industry.

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How do you believe your time at William Paterson prepared you for your post graduate life?

Looking back as a communication student at WPUNJ, I realize I learned a lot that prepared me for post-grad life. The professors were knowledgeable and the classes were information and relevant to my daily news life.

What clubs or activities were you involved in at William Paterson and how do you believe they have helped you so far?

As a student I wrote briefly for the Pioneer Times and worked in the WPTV studios as part of my classwork. By far, my time in broadcast news classes were the most beneficial as I now write news professionally each day.

You currently work at Fox News, how was the process of getting this job? What advice do you have for undergrads who are in the process of applying for jobs?

Fox is great when it comes to hiring young, talented people – most of the people I work with are millennials. The job application process was simple enough: I applied online to production assistant positions, heard back from a recruiter who gave me a list of jobs I was eligible to interview for (that weren’t PA positions) and then interviewed from there.

Advice for undergrads: Apply everywhere, even if you’re not sure it’s something you want to do. I didn’t necessarily want to be a production assistant, as I’m more interested in the editorial side rather than production aspect of news – but as you can see, I was presented with the opportunity to write after Fox reached out to me and we discussed what I wanted to do. You never know what can happen after submitting an application, so I highly suggest applying every place possible.

Where have you interned and how have those internships helped you in your career?

During college I interned with VH1 at Viacom, as well as 7 On Your Side at WABC-TV. My time at VH1 was helpful because I learned a lot about the use of social media in a professional environment and I’ve definitely used that experience as a stepping stone in this digital age. But it was my time spent at Channel 7 that really opened my eyes to the industry: I worked in a newsroom, sat in on daily news meetings and ultimately worked hands-on both in and out of the field. These internships allowed me to briefly step out into the “real world” while still working as a student.

What is your ultimate goal career wise? What is your dream job and how will you go about reaching that dream job?

Before and during college, I always thought my dream was to work on-air as a correspondent or local reporter. But now working in the industry for the past 8 or so months, I believe I’ve lost sight (for lack of a better term) of that goal and now see paths leading in other directions, which I don’t see as a bad thing. I was recently offered a job as a breaking news producer with FoxNews.com – not on-air, nor with “television news,” per se. I think I still have the goal of working on-air as a journalist but where my career may take me, no one knows.

What advice do you have for graduating seniors about post graduate life and the “real world”?

Like I said before, if you’re graduating college – apply EVERYWHERE. It’s so important to get your name and your resume out there and to let a variety of companies know that you’re available. The “real world” isn’t glamorous (but once you get a job, it does come with a nice paycheck!), and you shouldn’t fantasize it to be. My most important piece of advice would be to not give up hope if you’re facing obstacles and find walls are blocking your path to finding a job. It took me 4 months from graduation to joining Fox News, while some of my friends were offered jobs before even graduating – but next week I’ll be working as a news producer in one of the largest media organizations in the world, so I’d say working hard and remaining hopeful worked out for me in the end!

Spotlights

Bonnie, SiriusXM Internship Recruiter

Bonnie is an internship recruiter at SiriusXM, she is in charge of the internship program at SiriusXM, she has asked for her last name to not be featured in this article. Bonnie gives prospective interns a look into the program she oversees and what exactly they look for in an intern!

How many applications do you receive a semester for the internship program? How competitive is the internship program at SiriusXM?

An estimated 4000-5000 applications are received in a recruiting session.  

What sets the SiriusXM internship program apart from other entertainment related internship programs?

SiriusXM mentors offer hands on learning experience, allowing the intern to leave with skills they can apply and add on to their resume.  Interns are also made feel they are part of the team, and are provided snack and learn session to hear from other company members, a one-on-one evaluation meeting and career tips.  

What is the typical process that a candidate goes through before getting an internship offer at SiriusXM? How involved are the departments you are recruiting for?

Interns are screened and interviewed like employees.  We take the selection process seriously.  Departments such as programming (talk, music and sports, Public Relations, Talent Relations, Information Technology, Engineering, Finance & Accounting, Sales & Marketing are recruited for.  

How does the SiriusXM internship program help seniors in college prepare for the working world? Is there anything in particular the program does to help seniors get jobs within SiriusXM?

SiriusXM’s internship program prepares our interns by the following:

  1. Providing hands on training and meaningful work and projects to each intern
  2. One-on-One counseling/ evaluation
  3. Career workshops to help our interns transition to full time or part time employees, and also placement if the opportunity is available.  

What advice do you have to a future applicant who may be scared to apply to SiriusXM because of the fact SiriusXM is a very well-known media company?

An internship is a great way to start your career and explore your options.  Nothing to be afraid of when there is so much you could gain!  

In your opinion, what sets apart candidates that end up getting an internship position at SiriusXM? Is it related to their school work, internship experience?

Previous and related experience is helpful of course.  For example, a previous internship, involvement in their school clubs or radio station.  

How To's

Tips on How to Make Your Portfolio Stand Out in the Entertainment/Media Industry

It is always nerve wrecking to go in for a second interview at a company you really want to work at. Most undergrads know it is important to have a top shape resume, references and cover letters but what seems to be missing? A star portfolio! It is very time consuming to make a portfolio worthy of bringing to an interview but it is what could set you apart from other candidates. Many students seem to forget that although the internet has indeed taken over many aspects of the job search, bringing something physical and malleable to an interview should be expected.

As an Elite Daily writer states, she didn’t feel as though her resume full reflected the full scope of what she was capable of. That is something I can relate to with my vast amount of experience. It is necessary to show proof and have visuals to back up the claims in a resume.

As my professor once said to my class, portfolio’s can separate you positively from other contenders who have the same basic qualifications. Having visuals at an in person interview can truly be the determining factor between getting the job or not. The ideal portfolio will contain works that prove your strong background in whichever field in entertainment you wish to pursue a career in.

Below are the must have items for a successful portfolio:

  1. Most Updated Resume: Make sure to always carry your most recent resume in your portfolio since they might refer to your resume throughout the interview
  2. Cover Letter: If you are interviewing for a specific job, always bring with you a cover letter that is suited for the job you are interviewing for. They might not read it but will be impressed you have it with you!
  3. Writing Samples: Samples of your writing is where you can most shine in an interview. Your portfolio should have contain your strongest work such as press release samples, script samples, social media posts and more. By having the samples, you can have something physical to refer to in your interview.
  4. Analytics: If you are interested in jobs more on the analytical side such as social media, make sure to have a section with analytics related to blogs or social media pages you have worked on throughout your college career in internships or personal pages. Strong analytics can mean a lot for someone who is interviewing in a more business oriented sector of entertainment where numbers mean a lot.
  5. Recommendation Letters: Many times students think recommendation letters were a thing of the past, just used to get into colleges but they are important to get jobs as well. Recommendation letters written by former or current internship or work supervisors and professors contain information as to why they believe you would be qualified for any job in your field. They are vouching for you and that is a strong feat!