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.

 

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Spotlights

Jillian Leviton, Campus Recruiter, NBCUniversal

Jillian Leviton is a Campus Recruiter at NBC Universal and directly recruits for the NBC News and MSNBC sector of the company. Leviton is a graduate of George Washington University and has previously worked at the PageGroup as a recruiter before she joined NBCUniversal. Leviton discusses her tips for undergraduates and current college seniors about the internship program at NBC and gives her insight on the job search!

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Courtesy of Jillian Leviton

How many applications do you receive a semester for the internship program?

We get at least 10,000 but for summer it might go up to 20,000. But specifically I support NBC News and MSNBC internships so that’s mostly production but then it’s a PR internship, marketing internship, it’s an internship supporting the Today Show and Nightly News. So under that specific umbrella we probably have close to 4,000 or 5,000 for the summer and we have about 110 spots.

What specific qualities do recruiters like yourself look for in candidates?

We look for on campus involvement, almost most of our recruiters would say to have that experience with your school television, school newspaper or certain organizations and clubs like PR Women in Media. I would say it would be great to that people get prior internships, especially our local studios if you’re close to the city so whether it’s at another media company or its just working in PR role for a law firm, whatever it is that you can get. The skills section in your resume is a must have with the Microsoft Suite if you will and then in news we look for good writers.

Do you guys look for just specific internships someone should have when they apply for an internship at NBC?

It depends on the roles because we have so many different types. If your dream job is to work in casting or development it would be great if you had prior internship work experience because NBC is such a big company I tell people it’s not really the place to figure yourself out or say you’re open to anything. It’s really the place where we have people who say they want to work in media or work in PR or production. Just give us the options and we’ll help you figure it out from there. Half the internships you’re going to love half you’re going to hate so you can figure it out once you’re in the building. We want the people that want to do the specific job that we have.

Are prior entertainment internships a must to get an internship at NBC or to get noticed?

I wouldn’t say it’s a must, we pretty much evaluate on campus experience, I equivilate internships to on campus club involvement, leadership opportunities so if that’s what you want to do just make sure you’re getting yourself involved. You don’t have to work at one of our competitors to get a job here. And entertainment is not the only word I would use. NBC is huge we have our entertainment, sports, we also have NBC Sports, we have Olympics jobs and internships. We have internships with Today Show with NBC News, MSNBC and obviously Jimmy Fallon, SNL so depending on what area you want to go into yes you definitely need experience  in it but not necessarily internship. Work at your local news station, that’s fine too!

How do you work with the other recruiters who do the other sections of the recruitment for the internship program?

So if someone reaches out to me and says, “Hey, I’d like to intern for Jimmy Fallon” or anything outside of news I just send it to a list of all the recruiters on my team saying “Hey, this person reached out just forwarding along their resume in their areas of interest”. So it always helps when someone says their areas of interest or what specific job they applied to because I can just route it directly, otherwise I’ll just share it.

What are the necessary steps an undergraduate needs to take in order to get themselves noticed at NBC for an internship?

I already highlighted most of the important resume steps but if NBC is coming to your campus, follow us on social media where we’ll be tweeting or instagramming about where we’re going. Make a presence while we’re there in person, we’re not at every campus so it’s not necessarily applicable to everyone make sure you come out and introduce yourself. Go that extra mile and extra step. Having that one page resume with your involvements. Use career services, if your resume is half white and you’re not really selling yourself, fill it up!  I tell people the less amount of white space the better. Know about the media industry too I would say is the last piece. Do your research if you’re not on certain email blasts whether it’s synopsis or whatever the case may be start to learn the trade because once you get an interview, great, but what’s gonna make you stand out is knowing our executives, knowing what’s going on in the news, that’s most important.

What do you believe is the most important aspect of your job as an internship recruiter?

The most important aspect I would say is getting that interns that I work with hired in full time jobs. We really invest a lot of time and money and energy into our interns and the goal of our internship program is to have our current interns be the first that gets considered for a job so that’s definitely the most important aspect of my job. My favorite thing about my job is once you’re in the building I get to know you, to help develop you, we put on a lot of fun, especially during our summer program because no one needs to go to class half way through the day. We do a lot of fun speaker series and panels and workshops and resume advice. We get Andy Cohen to come speak to the interns so there’s a lot of fun programming elements that I like to do.

What can graduating seniors who have been a part of of the campus to career program do to improve their chances of getting a full time jobs at NBC?

We have a performance review and evaluation going on but I think it’s making sure that you’re having that open dialogue with your supervisor from week 1, month 1, month 2 and it’s not just at the end of your internship it’s getting to April, May time and you’re saying “oh no, now I need to pick up and step up my game to get a job” so I think making sure your performing as best as you can. Like I said, we work really close with the graduating seniors to convert them so having the dialogue with me, your recruiter and making sure that as I introduce you to people that you’re taking advantage of that and networking the right way. So I would say just being on top of it and being informed. Not leaving it to the last minute also is huge.

What about graduating seniors like myself who were not a part of the NBC campus to career program but know someone like you? What could we do try and get ourselves noticed for a job or considered for a full time job at NBC?

I think it’s about networking and taking advantage of opportunities like this, reaching out to people a first time, maybe a second time if they don’t answer. Connecting with people on LinkedIn specifically work in the field that you want a job in that can give you information and be on their radar when a job does open up in the next couple of weeks. It’s about building your professional brand, doing those informational interviews, just chatting with people and also bearing in mind how many other thousands or tens of thousands of people are graduating right now in May so don’t let that discourage you. Keep pushing, NBC is a huge company so whether it’s me that you have an in with or whoever just use those to your advantage. It’s about figuring out how to navigate finding who recruits for jobs.

What is your advice for college students who might be hesitant to apply to NBC due to the sheer volume of applications you get sent and just the name recognition?

On the internship side, don’t get discouraged. Fall and spring if you’re able to balance a 20 hour internship a week go for it, apply. and make sure that your resume is strong. I really do look at every application during the fall and the spring, summer  we just don’t because it’s too many applicants.

For those that are graduating, I would say apply about 6 weeks before your graduation date. That’s the best time, that’s the earliest time to start applying. Any time earlier than that is too early, we just don’t work how finance companies work and consulting companies that give offers 2 semesters in advance. It’s just not how media works. So if you know you’re going to do a vacation after graduation  keep waiting until 6 weeks before you want to start working and that’ll give you enough time to really start to apply.

How To's

Tips on Internship Applications: How to Properly Apply and Where to Look

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Courtesy of Better Team

There is always a question people ask me about my internships: how did you get your internship?

That is a question I am sure crosses many student’s minds as they realize they need an internship in order to further their careers. I believe everyone has their own way of getting internships and applying for them but these are my tips on how I did it. I truly think many of the incredible internship opportunities I have received are out of sheer luck meets preparation. Below are my tips on how to apply for internships!

  1. Make a List of Dream Companies: Many times professors may tell students to not aim too high for their first set of internships but I say it is important to make a list of the dream companies you want to intern for throughout your college years. You may not get these internships right away having these goals makes it easier for you to know what type of internships will get you to your dream company one day. For example, I always wanted to intern at Viacom, I applied multiple times before I ever got a chance from them. I always had them on my list of top 5 companies to intern for and every internship I got before it I realized I was getting closer and closer. Follow these companies on social media, follow what they are doing!
  2. Connect, Connect, Connect!: There is a saying that most of the times it’s all about who you know and that is extremely accurate to the world of entertainment. It is important for you to understand you might be extremely qualified for an internship but someone who knew someone who knew someone at a company can get a chance because they talked to the right person who then sent their resume along to HR. LinkedIn is a great tool to contact internship recruiters directly and get to know who your family members, classmates may know at your dream companies. Getting your resume referred to by someone within that dream company can make a huge difference on whether or not you get an interview.
  3. Look Up Listings:  Websites such as Internships.com, Indeed.com and MediaBistro.com will have an updated list of internships coming up. Making sure to filter exactly the type of companies you want to intern at will be crucial. For example, if you want to intern at a media company such as NBC, filters will let you get listings of internships at the company and other similar companies. LinkedIn has a jobs search section where you can also look up internship listings at entertainment companies and in your section of the country. Many of them will even have the recruiter’s name in the listing! When using job search companies like Indeed, always make sure to cross check that the internship listing is real. Do research on the company in the listing and whether or not it is accurate to what was on Indeed.
  4. Have a Star Resume: In order to get an internship interview you need to make sure your resume is star ready! Get your resume checked by your school student development center, a professor or a professional who can help you make your resume as optimal as possible. If you get referred by someone, they are directly sending your resume to a recruiter so there is no space for errors on your resume. Always have an updated resume in your email because you may never know when you will stumble upon someone who can help you get an internship and asks for your resume at that very moment.
  5. Get Ahead of the Application Game: A recruiter once told me that they always take a look at the first 100 resumes they get and last 100 resumes if they haven’t gotten the perfect fit. This is why you need to get notifications sent to your phone whenever an internship close to your experience is put out. It is ideal to apply for an internship the first day it is put online, which is your need to have your resume ready at all times! If you have anyone who works at the company you applied for, make sure to tell them about it and send them your resume so they can forward it to the correct recruiter.
  6. Be Optimistic: It is sometimes very discouraging to apply for a handful of internships and never hear back from them but always stay positive because something will always work out in the end. Never give up that dream of working at one of the largest media companies in the world. Every internship you get will eventually lead you to that dream internship and eventually job.
How To's

6 Ways to Accomplish Turning an Internship Into a Job Before Graduation

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Turning an internship into a job is a hard feat but not impossible. Below are 6 ways you can turn an internship into a job!

  1. Connect, connect with your supervisors and other departments
  2. Be social with the Human Resources department
  3. Keep up to date with job postings at your internship
  4. Always be on top of your intern work because you never know when they’re evaluating you
  5. Make yourself the go to person for your department so they will want to never lose you after your internship ends
  6. Start and end your internship in a positive and happy way!

It is important that as an intern you build friendships that will last a life time and making sure to keep in constant contact with your intern supervisors will surely end up taking you to your dream job!

How To's

How to Craft a Professional Email for Networking

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Courtesy of LinkedIn

Networking has become a very useful tool to get jobs and internships. As stated in my “How to Use LinkedIn As A Networking Tool” post, connecting with recruiters and colleagues is a great way to build your network. Knowing what exactly to write to them is also a crucial part of the networking process.

Hubspot created a step by step framework to increase your chances of success in networking. The five steps are: Research, Warm Up, Connect, Ask, Follow Up.

It is important to note that these steps are designed to “maximize chances of establishing a valuable relationship; it is not designed to mass cold email hundreds of people”. Networking emails should always be personal to the person you are trying to connect with.

First step is to research anything you can about the person you are trying to network with. Finding out where they work, their professional pages and email is just the beginning. Once you connect with them it’s important to find a personal connection with them, maybe something you learned about them from their LinkedIn or the company social media pages. Connecting with them is in my opinion the hardest part of the networking game. You need to make sure you are being personable to them, giving them a reason to want to speak to you. One important thing the Hubspot writers tates is, when trying to create a meaningful connection with them, don’t ask for any favors!

The ask and follow up stages are where you can begin to ask about certain opportunities you are interested in and following up on your conversations is important in order to keep your name fresh in their mind.

The actual structure of the email is a pretty straight forward, below is an example of what a professional email or LinkedIn message for networking can look like.

Hi Jill!

Thank you so much for accepting my invitation on LinkedIn!

Would love to know if we could chat some time about your experience at Revolution Public Relations and any advice you might have for me as a soon to be graduate in the real world. I’m graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and have been researching the various PR firms to apply to.

I currently intern at SiriusXM in their PR department and am looking at various places to apply for full time positions. Let me know if you would like to speak or grab coffee sometime to discuss.

Sincerely,

Victoria Saavedra

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!