I did not know what I wanted to study or make a career out of in college during my freshman year. Initially, I was an undergraduate business major at Georgetown University. That wasn’t the right fit. Slowly it dawned on me that I could make a career out of a true passion of mine, entertainment media. Now knowing what I want, I found the Park School of Communications at Ithaca College and I have not looked back.
Preproduction—scriptwriting, casting, financing, organizing, leading—is where I’ve found my niche. But television and other media aren’t only great pastimes; I am also beginning to see them as great businesses. That is why I have also chosen to be a finance minor as well. I want to be able to create a show or a movie from the ground up and I believe having financial knowledge as well as production knowledge will help me achieve that.
One aspect of television that is both an exciting frontier and a little overwhelming is the convergence of the traditional TV and the Internet. Between the major networks, cable stations, on-demand, and sites like Hulu and Netflix, there is almost an excess of programs for me to watch. Will the increased fractionalization continue or will this new competition cause the way we currently watch TV to adapt into something new? The answer to this question requires versatility and will be one of the greatest opportunities for students like me to affect the media landscape and get into something on the ground floor.
Furthermore, “functional innovation” (a new favorite term of mine, recently learned at Ithaca) is increasing the amount of devices from which TV can be viewed. The idea is that all digital products can be made to work with each other. Since digital media is still so young, it seems like a fertile field for creating new jobs for a globally expanding market (which is why my “dream job” today might be something else entirely tomorrow).
Internships seem to be an increasingly important part of securing a job after college as well as gaining experience. I intend to intern every summer while at Ithaca. Also, I’m excited to go the Los Angles during a future semester where I should have great internship opportunities. One function of internships is to determine what jobs I wouldn’t want to pursue when I graduate.
Being in Ithaca has taught me similar lessons. I have heard advertisers, marketers, journalists, and photographers speak about their professions, but they do not interest me the way TV and movie producers do. Now, I will be able to approach school and learning about media with a more focused goal of what I want to do with this knowledge.
Ultimately, I see myself as a producer or as some other executive position within either the television or movie industry. I have always been a good student in the stereotypical sense (science, math, english, history….), but I also love to create stories and characters. My dream is to fuse my pragmatic self and imaginative self into a career in entertainment media. If people get to make a living doing this stuff, I want to be one of them.