This was my lovely parting gift from my internship with Metrovision Cable in Farmington Hills, Michigan, in the spring of 1991. When I was a student at Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts, I did two internships. I was studying both radio and RTV. In the early 90s, there were two tracks at Specs; radio engineering, RE classes, and Broadcast Redo and TV, RTV classes. My class was RTV11-90, the 11th Radio and Television class that started in 1990.
I did a radio internship with a news and talk station for 3 months and then I did one with Metrovision for TV production experience. I started the one with Metrovision in March, knowing that the internship wouldn’t end until after I’d finished school. I only needed one internship for my program. I just wanted the production experience because I’d decided I really wanted to work in production and NOT in news. When I started at Specs, I was sure I was going to be in something behind the scenes in television news. After 3 months with news media professionals in radio, I knew that I could never be comfortable working in news. I found myself with too many jaded people who found joy in the most devastating events. I never wanted to laugh at people suffering or get excited about war because it was “good for business.”
At Metrovision, I interned in the public access department, working with members of the community on their projects. I also had a project of my own that I was working on as part of the requirements for my internship. I assisted with teaching classes and learned as I worked with students too. These things set me up perfectly for my first real paying job. I was the Public Access coordinator and Sports producer at Omnicom less than a year later. I taught the classes I assisted with as an intern and also produced local and high school sports for the local origination channel, the difference being public access was programming produced by the cable company’s customers and local origination was produced by professionals, company employees, highlighting local events. Local Origination was a great place for an entry-level job because it taught and expanded skills in every aspect of production.
I loved that internship and it completely groomed me for that first job that I loved even more. I found that I enjoyed working with volunteers in the community sand I enjoyed working with the professionals that also worked with them. I felt like I was really a part of the department even though I was just an intern and I learned how truly important that was to do for the interns that reported to me, make them feel like they were a part of everything that was going on. It made the internship experience a valuable one. On the last official day of my internship, I walked in to the office and the members of the department brought out this mug, filled with candy and balloons tied to it and a wonderful card of “graduation.” I still have that card with the many special cards I’ve kept over the years.