Jason: Interning at WGBH

Jason ImageBoston University is a great school in itself, but as a COM student the education would not be complete without the number of great internships the city of Boston has to offer. Whether you’re studying to become the next Anne Curry, Lizzie Grubman, or Scorsese there is an internship in Boston that is perfect for you. For broadcast journalists we’ve got Channel 5, NECN, NESN, for PR majors there’s Boston Medical Center and CONE Communications, and for Film/ TV TD Garden, and a number of production companies that are making films through out the year.

Just last week, I was offered an internship position at WGBH, Boston’s member station of PBS. The opportunity came up on me rather quickly after the documentary that I had been planning to make with my sociology professor was put on hold because of a funding issue. Nevertheless, I’m now excited to say that I’ll be working on the production of a new American Experience Documentary on JFK.

My first day was Monday and I’m already in awe. I have my own huge cubicle with a brand new IMac, a WGBH email address and phone number extension. The cafeteria has everything from sushi to steak and I’m surrounded by Emmy’s and numerous other awards that American experience has won.

For the beginning, I’ll be logging all of the stills and video related to JFK that WGBH already has in their database. After that’s all sorted through, we’ll being production and film new interviews, B-roll footage, etc. For now I work there four hours on Mondays and Wednesdays but once the summer starts and production gets into full swing I should be there five days out of. I’m so pumped about this and will definitely keep you guys updated on the happenings for this project.

Mike: Abroad in Madrid!

Mike Image

Hola chicos!

I can’t believe I’ve already been in Madrid for almost three weeks now! I’ve been going nonstop since getting here and I’m still completely exhausted. I feel like I’ve been here for ages, it’s very strange. But so far I am absolutely loving it. It is so different from home– the culture, the food, the people, the nightlife. Every street I walk down I have to stop and take pictures. The architecture is like nothing I’ve ever seen. The people here are all very friendly (so much nicer than New Yorkers), and I am definitely glad I’m being forced to speak Spanish all the time.

My host family is wonderful. My mom, Pilar, is so kind and welcoming. We call her “mapi,” a term of endearment her kids called her when they were young. Her daughter, Maria, is also very sweet. She’s a lawyer and is always starting up conversations with me, even if I have to take long pauses to try to respond. It has been a lot of head nods, smiles, and “si’s” while I’ve been here. Neither of them speak English. They’ll know a few words here and there but I have to speak to them entirely in Spanish, which is certainly frustrating because there is so much I’d like to speak to them about but I’m not nearly knowledgeable enough to carry on full-length conversations. My comprehension is definitely much better than my speaking. My classes are all taught in Spanish so my understanding of the language is rapidly improving.

I’m enrolled in the documentary filmmaking program here (there’s only 3 of us!) so I’m taking four classes: documentary filmmaking, Spanish cinema, colloquial Spanish, and translation for film and theater. So far they are all interesting. In Spanish cinema we are covering a bunch of Almodovar movies, and in the colloquial class I am learning all kinds of Spanish slang ranging from casual greetings to ordering beers at a bar. In the translation class, we are translating scenes from classic movies like Annie Hall into Spanish. Woody Allen is definitely not an easy writer to translate, so it’s pretty challenging. The documentary class will consume most of my time as the three of us begin pre-production for the film we are shooting. We’ve been looking around the city the past few weeks to find a topic to explore. We decided to focus on the cultural significance of “pan” or bread in each meal in Spain. We are traveling to different panerias to film the process of bread making and interviewing different families to see how bread plays a role in their family dinners. I’m sure we will be eating a lot of bread along the way so I definitely don’t mind that. Overall, the food here has been delicious. There is ham and egg in everything! And they also barely refrigerate anything! The eggs, milk, and juices are always left out. So strange.

I’ve already visited Toledo, a small village about an hour outside of Madrid. It was so quaint– cobblestone streets and beautiful churches and synagogues. I felt like I had stepped into a scene from Don Quijote. Next weekend, we are traveling to Granada, which is supposed to be filled with Moorish architecture. I can’t wait. We have already booked other weekend trips to Sevilla, Barcelona, and Amsterdam. In March, I have a two week spring break where we are planning to go to Dublin and the southern coast of France– Nice, St Tropez, and Monaco, and then venture over to Italy to cover Florence and Rome. Yup, I know you’re jealous.

I will be sure to keep you guys posted on my travels! I miss Boston and hope everyone is off to a great semester.

Hasta luego,
Mike