University makes plans to hit Hollywood with immersion program
Published: Friday, September 28, 2012
Updated: Friday, September 28, 2012 03:09
Get ready to be star struck. Miami University students will now be able to make their mark in Los Angeles, Calif. with a new immersion program called Inside Hollywood.
David Sholle, an associate professor of communication, is the lead coordinator of the new Inside Hollywood program.
“The program will launch this summer from May 18 to June 8,” Sholle said. During the first two weeks, students will take tours of TV and film production sets, attend small group lecture sessions and talk to some of the Miami Alumni working in Hollywood. In the final week, students will job shadow an employee on various film sets like a mini-internship.
The program will likely be open to all majors without any prerequisite courses and will accept a maximum of 15 students, according to Howard Kleiman, mass communications professor and coordinator of a similar Washington, D.C. immersion program, Inside Washington.
“As long as a student can give me a good enough reason for being chosen as a participant, I will seriously consider their application,” Kleiman said. “We will have the entire spring semester to bring the accepted applicants up to speed.”
Sholle and Kleiman will be leading the application process. Sholle said the program will serve as a four credit class addressing multiple aspects of the TV and film industry such as TV and film preproduction, production and editing, script development, casting, entertainment law, administration and finance, development and distributing and marketing.
Miami alumni in Hollywood have played a key role in the program’s startup, both Sholle and Kleiman said.
“Once we had the idea for the program, we began to realize how many connections we had in Hollywood from our Miami Alumni,” Sholle said. “Through the help of the Alumni during this program, we’re hoping more internship and job opportunities will arise for the students.”
According to Sholle some of the Miami Alumni participating in the program include, yet are not limited to: Rick Ludwin, former senior vice president of late night programming on NBC; Sonny Gourley, president of AMC entertainment division; Mark Hentemann, executive producer of Family Guy; and Jason C. Brown, the Assistant Director of CSI: NY.
Molly Shanks is a Miami alumna currently working with Original Productions Company on the show Ax Men in Hollywood.
“LA is so far from Miami and can look daunting to students interested in working there someday,” Shanks said. “This program is an amazing opportunity for students to start networking. Interviewing is great, but so much can change once you go on location and meet people in person,”
Sholle and Kleiman said they hope the program will be successful enough to expand to last 10 weeks during the summer or be offered over an entire semester so a full-length internship can be completed.
While in LA, students will be housed in an apartment complex near NBC and Warner Brothers studios. The location will provide a great starting point for the studio visits included in the trip.
Sophomore communication pre-major Kate Redinger said she hopes to one day work for a television network.
“This program seems unreal,” Redinger said. “How else would I be able to visit a place like the NBC television set and talk to the producers of the show?”
Students seeking information on the Inside Hollywood program can attend an informational meeting 6 p.m. October 8 in 160 Williams Hall.