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Making the most of a TV internship

Making the most of a TV internship

Student standing behind TV news camera
TV production in action

Earlier this year, I wrote an article about an opportunity CSU had given me to meet with entertainment industry representatives and receive an internship. I was lucky enough to obtain such an internship, and have spent the past fortnight working for FremantleMedia on various shows.

My first impressions of their post-production facility were startling – the place had a very corporate feel, with white, grey and black designs throughout the building. There were desks and computers everywhere (although I don’t know what I should have been expecting from a post-production facility!).

Despite the cold appearance, the place was far from it. I was immediately welcomed and given a quick tour of the office; the people were warm and inviting, taking genuine interest in my thoughts and opinions and answering each and every one of the thousands of questions I threw their way.

Getting straight to work, they sat me down and explained the data management system and workflow – basically how everything is organised in a succinct and consistent way, and how a piece of work is passed from initiation to completion. In fact, every single thing they asked me to do was explained in a practical way, as well as a theoretical way – they taught me how to do something along with why it’s done.

It didn’t matter who I was talking to, every single person in that office took time out of their day to educate me on the work they were doing and so far, I’ve learnt an enormous amount.

They gave me access to an editing system and for the first week I worked as an Edit Assist – sorting footage from various productions such as The Great Australian Bake-Off and X Factor (sorry, no spoilers here!), that will eventually be passed on in an ordered way to an Assembly or Head Editor.

I’d always taken reality TV for granted. It had never occurred to me the sheer size some of these productions can get, and how many dedicated people there are behind the scenes working to make it happen, each role just as important as any other.

The last few days I went to their Head Office and worked with the Digital Media team, where I was clipping pieces together for another few shows, such as I Own Australia’s Best Home and Ready for Take-off. I learnt about how important it was to analyse the style and the feel of the show and try to portray that in all aspects of the editing, to think about our audience and the demographic in order to deliver the best content available.

I learnt about the amount of planning and scheduling that goes into online content and releases on Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms.

Although the work I was doing was sometimes repetitive, it was also very satisfying knowing that I was laying the foundations of an edited piece, making the work easier and more efficient for those above me, and working in a huge collaboration that I still cannot grasp the full extent of.

With such a unique and worthwhile experience, I recommend internships to anyone of any industry. Getting a glimpse into the real life workings of your prospective career is an opportunity like no other.

But if there’s one important thing I have learnt from these past two weeks it’s this: staring at a screen for eight hours watching people bake decadent cakes will make you crave sugar like crazy! And don’t even get me started on my sudden interest for interior design…

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