Hollywood Media Internship

The Hollywood Internship Program is a summer study and work opportunity that provides a great way to apply classroom learning to the specific career goals of interest to selected Communication Studies students.

It also serves as an industry immersion experience. Interns benefit from gaining practical skills in state-of-the-art technical facilities and are exposed to the expertise of renowned producers, directors, screenwriters, cinematographers & agents.


Hollywood Heels: L.A. internships provide invaluable industry experience – YouTube.

In just over two decades, the UNC-Hollywood Internship has become an exemplary program. Since 1994, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has supported the program with more than $200,000 in grants (that go directly to intern scholarships) and in-kind donations. In a city where the internship opportunities may seem most competitive for students from local schools like USC and UCLA, UNC-Chapel Hill has been consistently recognized by the Academy for the quality of our internship program.


Without Paul Edwards and his support during my internship process and into my early career, I don’t know where I would have found a start to my career in Hollywood–or even that I would have a career. I’m a successful producer on two television shows now thanks to Paul, and I am forever grateful for his guidance. – Brian Ferguson `03


For 20 years Paul Edwards has been gently introducing the nascent film makers of UNC to the anarchic, often archaic, always dynamic Hollywood gristmill where art and commerce awkwardly interface. His firm guiding hand has helped open their eyes to the harsh realities of the entertainment industry, all while helping them protect and nurture their dreams and chart solid courses for their ambitions. -Jim Bissell `73 (Oscar-nominated Production Designer/UNC-Hollywood Guest Lecturer/AMPAS Board of Governors)


Since our program began with a handful of interns in 1992, more than 200 young graduates have come to Los Angeles to discover their place in the entertainment industry. They have attended lectures by many luminaries in the business and they have learned about all aspects of film and television production: from editing to production design, from directing to acting to distribution, from development to music composition to talent management. The opportunity to get the BIG picture from successful Hollywood icons and to understand how various elements of the business come together to make the final product is invaluable.


Thanks to the UNC-Hollywood program, I was placed as an intern at the company for which I am still working. I love my job. I get to produce films and documentaries that I really care about. I am forever grateful to the program for helping me make the transition from my studies at UNC to the career I now have in the industry. -Katie McNeil `08 (former intern and current mentor/intern preceptor)


With 20+ years of launching careers, many of our former interns are now hosts to current interns. Networking through the program has provided career guidance and often times employment. Through UNC-Hollywood, lives have been changed and continue to be changed. Art is being created and important stories are being told.

For more, read Carolina Arts & Sciences Magazine‘s Spring 2015 piece, “Hollywood Heels: L.A. internships provide invaluable industry experience” (Kristen Chavez).

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We will not start the application process for the summer of 2016 until the fall of 2015.

Applications for Summer 2016 are due no later than TBD (check back in Fall of 2015).

If you are planning on applying for the Hollywood Media Internship, please download the application and resume template below.  Resumes MUST fit this one-page requirement, so condense your experiences/education into a concise document.  The resume should be geared toward potentially working at a company rather than simply getting into the internship program. The resume should fill the page but not be longer than one page. No high school experience should be on your resume unless you worked or performed on a feature film or network television series. Also, for faculty references, you will NOT need letters of recommendation; simply include the names of those Communication Studies faculty who are most familiar with your work and/or that you’ve had recent class experience with.  The deadline to submit is TBD (check back in Fall of 2015).

Interviews will be conducted with internship director, Paul Edwards, and will be 15 min. long.  You will sign up for an interview time-slot when you turn in your application.
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Hollywood_Internship_Application 2016 (check back Fall of 2015)



The deadline to turn in applications is: TBD (check back Fall of 2015)
Interviews will take place on campus on TBD (check back Fall of 2015)

Applications can be turned in to Beth Cox in 115 Bingham Hall (1st fl); you will also make your interview appointment at that time.

Internships take place in companies doing business in the most competitive arena in the world: the Entertainment Industry.  They are not in the business to teach. You have to learn on the run and by osmosis! While in the program, you will work first-hand with those doing the job you are interested in having, and it’s a great way to find out where your interests really lie, and what it takes to “make it” in the field.

The typical length of internship is somewhat up to the student to decide, but the time frame is June to August 2016.  Many students in past UNC-Hollywood internship placements have remained in the LA area and used the networking and class information to score a job in the industry after their internship ended.

Once you’re accepted into the program, you are required to take two courses in the 2nd Summer Session for this internship.  The first course will be COMM 690, Special Topics in Media Studies for 3 credit hours.  The second course will be COMM 393, Internship for 3 credit hours.  You will be registered for these courses by the Comm. Studies Registrar during the registration period for Summer School.  You will also need to apply for Summer School financial aid, should you need assistance with paying tuition and/or living expenses.

Since you will be taking these courses as part of the program, you will need to postpone graduation from May to August.  If you have applied to graduate in the Spring, you will need to withdraw your name through Academic Advising, once it’s been confirmed you have been selected to the program.  You will still be able to walk in both the University and departmental commencement ceremonies in the Spring, but your official graduation will not be until August.

The majority of students interning with the UNC Hollywood internship program stay at OAKWOOD apartments at Toluca Lake near Burbank, as it offers a convenient location and furnishings with all amenities.  However, students also make their own arrangements, often sharing apartments or a home with other interns from UNC.  Oakwood often offers special rates during the summer, and once, you are chosen for the internship program, you’ll be provided with brochures and contacts for this apartment community, should you be interested.

You will need a car to get around in L.A. Students usually drive a car there, often sharing expenses and car-pooling.  However, because your internships may be spread out, you might plan on taking your own vehicle, renting a car, or car pooling with a fellow intern working close to your internship.

Since you will still be enrolled in school for 6 credit hours, you will likely be covered by UNC student health insurance.  Make sure you check to see if it will continue over the Summer months.

You will be required to have UNC liability insurance, which usually is around $20-25 per intern for the entire summer.  This insurance protects you, your internship employer and the University.  Please do not confuse this with medical health insurance which will need to be your own coverage plan.

HOLLYWOOD-INTERN-INFO-PACKET 2015 (note: some information may change for 2016 — read only as a reference)

Special support provided by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.