Monday, May 13, 2013

The Value of Video Production Internships

Preparing for the video professional job market with an internship or apprenticeship.
More video professionals graduating.
Since this is the midst of college graduation season, it got me thinking about what the new graduates are now up against. The age-old problem of how to get a job without experience and how to get experience without a job.

Last year at this time we discussed "Freelance Video Editing: Determining Your Rate", this week we'll discuss how to gain experience in the video production industry.

I believe the best way to learn is by doing. For a student, the best way to be able to add real experience to his or her resume is by participating in an internship or apprentice program.  Being involved in these programs is beneficial to all involved - both the student and the sponsoring company.

I'm not suggesting "Video Services Provided for Free", which was the subject of a previous blog. Instead of giving the labor away for free, an internship is an equal exchange for experience and knowledge. The kind of experience and knowledge that would not be possible in a classroom.

As a student, it's a good idea to thoroughly research the film or video facility offering the internship. Steer clear of places that are just looking for free labor. Generally those places won't let interns do the actual work where the appropriate experience and learning is gained.

Back during my days inside the walls at Avid Technology, interns were always part of the video production group. I was lucky enough to have some very talented interns. In my case, the best interns I ever had, were sent to me from a high school. A pair a knowledge-hungry high school seniors who could instantly perform whatever was asked of them.

The best transactions are those that are done for equal value, and internships provide equal value to both the intern and the production company. Not only do internship programs provide hands-on, real-world experience, but in a lot of cases, if the intern does a good job, it leads to paying work in the video profession.

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