Internship Fair Brings Big Businesses

If you've ever contemplated record breaking feats of soccer ball juggling, or pictured yourself immersed in the enchanting and exotic world of reality television, then Santa Monica College's Internship Fair last Thursday, May 6 was the place for you.

On a congested and bustling campus quad, placements in fields as varied as women's soccer and local theatre ensured that it wasn't exactly slim pickings for students looking for summer jobs and internships in the upcoming months and beyond.

Most abundant, however, were opportunities in the world of media, with Fox News and the Hollywood Reporter offering just some of the many opportunities open to students hoping to get their foot in the door of film, radio, television and the ever-burgeoning online sector.

Alison Locke, a volunteer coordinator for Film Independent, a non-profit arts organization with close links to the Los Angeles Film Festival, said that they are looking for students with a "love of films and film making" to volunteer to help at the festival running from June 17-27. Sylvia, who asked that her last name not be used, works for entertainment magazine Moving Pictures and offered something decidedly more glamorous.

"We offer three different kinds of internships," said Sylvia. "One in the content division, an editorial internship, and another that could put [the student] right in the mix of the film festivals at Cannes and Newport Beach."

"We really try not to have our intern sitting in the corner and making coffee," said Tonya Carter, a human resource director for Fox News. Carter said that they take in as many as 35 interns every year, and their duties, in some cases, can involve helping to edit the news reel that is part of their evening telecast.

Many students gravitated to the more fashionable stalls like Film Independent and The Hollywood Reporter, the latter looking for interns to help with an upcoming reality TV "Comic-Con" style convention. SMC student Ashley Hackworth, 19, was one of those. Already running her own promotional blog, Hackworth said that she was interested in helping at the LA film festival as a means of breaking into the world of public relations.

But interest wasn't solely devoted to the big media companies. Jason Lemire, a general manager at the Pali Blues women's soccer club, saw a steady stream of interest throughout the day, and made sure students' attention was directed to the quality of their graphic and Web design department. But it was what they have planned for their opening day match that raised most eyebrows.

"We're aiming to break the current world record for the amount of people juggling soccer balls in one stadium," said Lemire. "It's part of an initiative to send soccer balls to needy children here in L.A. and around the world."

Judy White, internship coordinator, was delighted with the turnout for the fair. She said that recruiters were impressed by students' zeal and pointed out that SMC Careers Services offers booklets with employer and the internship information.

"So many of the employers came up to me impressed by the enthusiasm and interest shown by the students," said White. "But the internships aren't just limited to the summer, they're available all year round."