First day lessons: Internship at The Newseum

IMG_0212By Dean’s Intern Yan Shi at Newseum

“Don’t be afraid to break things. You learn more by breaking things, and things can be fixed.”

“Don’t be afraid to ask questions.”

In other words, don’t be afraid.

The above are pieces of advice from the video editor (my supervisor) for the broadcast productions department and the director of broadcast technology at The Newseum. Needlessly to say, I’ve been heeding that advice and taking advantage of the fantastic opportunities that I’m offered while I’m interning as the video production/broadcast technology intern. The internship combines both my  fields of interest, broadcast journalism and computer science, and puts them into a neat package that allows me to get a glimpse into both worlds.

My first day was incredibly exciting as I was able to tour the “behind the scenes” offices and editing rooms of the third floor. I remember thinking about how it was funny that I was doing this when just last year, during a visit, I had thought to myself, “I would love to work here.” And now I do.

[Image of a Mac Computer with video editing software]

Creating a “string-out” with A-Roll, B-Roll, and roll from a GoPro.

The environment is so warm and welcoming. My coworkers are so lively, and there’s never a day where there is a dull conversation going on. It could be about the news, current events, or just things happening in people’s lives. Though stress levels rose as deadlines approached, the friendliness and openness never changed.

In regards to my projects, I’m proud and excited to say that I’ve worked on an upcoming exhibit (coming very soon!), created the basic structure of a new broadcast technology “wiki-page,” helped assist with a technology project with a current exhibit, and helped with a “Humor” video or two. I hadn’t realized how closely related broadcast and computer science are to each other, but in this environment, it’s a much more obvious reality.

A computer with a photo editing software.

Editing a photo using Photoshop for a video channel test.

My supervisor is so patient with me when he teaches me how to use Adobe Premiere and, sometimes, AVID. I’m slowly getting a handle of the functions and controls, and I’m excited for when I’m able to start on another video project. With the director of broadcast technology, I get a taste of a lot of programming languages I’m not familiar with or with programs and tech that I’ve never encountered before. I know how captioning works and I know how the kiosks at The Newseum function. I’ve tested and I’ve given feedback on the new kiosk for the exhibit that’s coming up very soon. I know how to digitize tapes, and I’ve somehow managed to sorta understand the lingo that’s thrown around in the office.

For four days a week, I’m living a dream. This opportunity so far has allowed me to grow not only as a professional but also as a person as well. I feel much more confident, and, while I’m still shy, I feel like asking for help, asking questions, or talking to others just to make casual conversation feels so much easier. It has been a month since I’ve began my internship, and I cannot wait to see what next three months will bring me.