Students always ask me, "What's the best way for me to break into TV as a (fill in the blank – writer, producer, director)?" The answer is really simple: the best first job for anyone to get in TV is whatever job you can land. Forget the whole idea of "dream job." Get you foot in the door, then work on "ideal" from within the business. Getting your second job in TV is a hundred times easier than getting your first because once you have a job – any job – you are on the inside. You'll have friends and contacts who can tell you about job opening before they are ever posted. You'll have references from inside the biz and a track record (which is why you should bust your behind to be the greatest coffee fetcher, copier, or lunch getter you can be.)
One great frist step is to sign up with temp agencies that serve the entertainment industry. Temp jobs pay the bills while you're looking for something steady – and often lead to full-time jobs when your employer sees what you can do and how hard you're willing to work.
At Chapman, the TV program prides itself on not just giving students an education, but helping them transition to the real, working professional world. Tomorrow night is Foot in the Door night at the Prime Time TV Club. Alums who are 1-5 years into the biz share tips with current students on how to land your first job, how to network, what they know now that they wish they knew in school, etc.
Check out tomorrow's post for tips from our alums and a list of places they are working now.