Industry Days is the festival’s hub for filmmakers and industry professionals to connect, share ideas, and find inspiration. This year’s event examines current and future trends in the art and industry of the entertainment business.
Join EPICS at Industry Days on Friday, October 21st as we attend the following panels:
A Conversation with Howard Tullman on the Future of Filmed Entertainment (Moderated by Northwestern faculty member, Aymar Jean “AJ” Christian)
From Horror to Comedy, Is Genre Content a Viable Way to Launch Your Career? (Panelists include Northwestern faculty member Spencer Parsons)
Punchlines: How to Make Sh*t Funny
Hollywood Dealmaker: A Conversation with MACRO’s Charles D. King on Producing & Packaging Films (Moderated by Northwestern lecturer/alum and Head of TV at Denver & Delilah, Laverne McKinnon)
Interested in attending? Please apply via SoConnect by Wednesday, October 5th by submitting a brief letter of intent, letting EPICS know how this opportunity would aid in your career development. Resumes are not required but encouraged (in addition to the letter). Those selected to attend with EPICS will be notified by Friday, October 7th. Industry Days will take place at Gallery at GreenRover (259 E. Erie, 18th Floor). This location is easily accessible from the Northwestern Intercampus Shuttle. Students selected to attend this event will meet EPICS staff in front of this building at 9:30am, leaving at 5pm. Please note that while we are attending as a group on 10/21, your pass will also work on 10/22-10/23, so you’ll be able to enjoy more of Industry Days over the weekend should you wish.
Go to SoConnect > EPICS Events > Industry Days > Register for Event to apply.
I remember sitting on the 14th floor of the 150 N. Michigan Avenue Building the same way I remember my first day of my master’s study at Northwestern University: excited, anxious, and eager to know about those fresh knowledge and people. That’s actually what drew me to applying for an internship of marketing and communication; the opportunity to learn how to provide efficient communication strategies to clients from various industries and create suitable marketing plan to different target customers.
From the very first day with LimeGreen Moroch, everyone welcomed me as a member of the team and genuinely expected me to make a contribution. After the welcome lunch, I took my first step into the marketing field. The first project I participated in was a marketing campaign our team designed for United States Tennis Association, and it aimed to develop a communication plan and tactics for increasing Hispanic, Asian and African American attendance at the 2016 US Open. I hit the ground running, working on a data analysis assignment that illustrated the customer insights of the US Open and other sports. During the analytic process, I faced challenges of arranging and selecting the target data among the messy database. When I asked my supervisor for help, she suggested me to use SQL to deal with those data. Then I expanded upon my knowledge of coding with SQL by watching YouTube tutorials and reading various textbooks. The experience helped me better understand how to use economics analysis as a tool to explore the big data created by vast amount of customers in order to better understand their unmet need and help brands to design marketing strategies to better serve its customers. Additionally, as the only Asian at LimeGreen Moroch, I participated in a focus group to provide some insights about how Asian people view different sports. It was a wonderful experience that people from different culture share their opinions and communicate with an open mind. It also gave me some reflections about how cultural difference can influence marketing strategies.
The second project I had the opportunity to participate in was our cooperation with Kia Motors. I played the part of making competitive analysis that refers to doing research about Kia’s competitors such as Toyota, Honda, and Nissan. At first, I just looked through their advertisements and found out that it had nothing new to dig up as we had the same customer insights with the competitors. Then my supervisor led me to think from other perspectives such as going through their social media sites, digging up the marketing campaigns they held. In this way, we did find lots of useful information and it made me have a new understanding of today’s digital markets.
Besides these projects, I also took the responsibility of answering the phone and accounting. As a shy person, this seemingly easy assignment was hard for me at the beginning. Especially because I am not a native speaker. I so appreciate that my colleagues never lost their patience with me and helped me rehearse again and again. And after practicing so many times, now I am quite confident to communicate with our clients.
But the work—meaningful as it was—was only one part of what made my experience so special. Everyone I met, from my project team to internship training program, helped me grow, both as an employee and a person. My supervisors talked with me about my ambitions, hopes, and struggles regularly, not because they felt obligated, but because they truly cared. Their dedication to their jobs and their fellow employees is something I will never forget.
Overall, it’s been amazing to be a part of this marketing agency, and I look forward to the remaining week. I am excited about the contribution I have made so far, and I am thrilled that I am able to share details of my wonderful experience.
Until then just one piece of advice, especially for international students: Step out of your comfort zone, and don’t hesitate to look for something new for your summer internship. It is an efficient way to know about different cultures and build your professional network in a foreign country. This will expand your learning horizons, make you discover something new that you like, and will be absolutely worth it.
Yingwen Zeng is a MS in Communication student who is interning at LimeGreen Moroch over the summer.
For our last week at the company, my supervisors at Creative Artists Agency, the organizers of the internship program, asked the interns to prepare a presentation with a simple goal: tell us what you did this summer. It’s a concise request, and nonetheless an involved one—what did I do this summer?
I learned my first day that no task is too small. I’ve been employed in a plethora of unpaid positions. No-pay/college credit jobs can teach invaluable skills with a well facilitated program, but they also have controversial reputations entrenched in the ethical questions surrounding unpaid labor. If you ask some people about their summer internship experiences, they will say they had a summer full of doing “X” tasks which were, in fact, too small. I, too, had some small tasks. I also had one of the best employment experiences, one which will set the tone and trajectory for my career. CAA treated me like a competent individual, acknowledging my desire to learn, giving me the resources to explore, and instilling in me an attitude which will benefit all work experiences to come.
The difference between my experience—one which was fulfilling, enlightening, inspiring—and hundreds of other internships that do not leave their short-term employees with the same positive sentiment (aside from pay), I believe, is the mental outlook we’re encouraged to have from day one. CAA lives a culture of teamwork, accountability, and the belief that small actions can have resounding impact. I’ve learned that it’s not about the size of the task, as much as it is the attitude you have approaching it. Whether it’s running an errand, toiling on a complex grid, or sharing opinions on art with a supervisor, what you do and say can affect the days and thoughts of other people, contributing to the whole. A company is a community, and for a community to thrive, the individuals must work together. From the arguably menial tasks, to tasks that involved dedicated critical thinking, each intern increased the efficiency of the company in their own way. We felt important because we were given the agency to make ourselves essential.
If I can describe the final presentations in one word, I’d say impactful. The interns shared the tangible effects their work had on the company’s business, ranging from organized file systems to amalgamations of potential new clients which would increase the visibility of multicultural people in the entertainment industry. Beyond witnessing the clear impact from our work, I saw a group of twenty-somethings with fires in their bellies to do more, because we were treated like we could do more. We gained a sense of community, one where we saw how small projects factored into large results.
What did I do this summer? Superficially, I can tell you I worked. I worked with my peers, ambitious and intelligent interns trying to leave a footprint; I worked for hard-working assistants just a few years out of college, people who encouraged me to be curious just as they were in their first post-grad agency experience; and, I worked for agents, tireless advocates for some of the world’s greatest entertainment talents. To go further, I can tell you I worked on myself. I’m more appreciative, I’m more than willing to work harder, and I’m excited for my future. This summer, I learned that being the best means being surrounded by the best, challenging your expectations, and giving energy to something bigger.
This summer, I worked on projects and myself. It would not have been possible without the people from day one, those mentors who encouraged me to think big. When you’re thinking big, no task is too small.
Liam Feroli is a s a rising junior Radio, Television, and Film student who is interning at Creative Artists Agency over the summer.