Ask and You Shall Recieve

by Center Theatre Group

in MetLife/TCG A-ha! Think It Do It

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(This post was originally posted on Think It, Do It, Blog It as part of  The MetLife/TCG A-ha! Program. We’re cross-posting on the Circle to better highlight the work of our grantees.)

By Patricia Garza, Center Theatre Group

We made huge strides recently in our research for this grant by actually talking with students! We gathered 12 students from our partner universities and advisors and talked with them about what their ideal internship structure would be in an organization. All the students were extremely enthusiastic and contributed so many great ideas!

Here are a few of the highlights:

• Students need to be paid for their work, especially at a graduate level.

Types of Projects/Tasks
• Students want project based work that serves the needs and increases the capacity of the organization.
• They would like to be supported with their tasks within a safe space to make mistakes.

Mentorship Opportunities
• It is very important to the students that their mentors are prepped through training emphasizing how to work with interns for the benefit of both the organization and the intern.
• Students would like ideally to have a comprehensive view of the organization, working in various departments first, then honing in on one specific area of focus.

Expectations and End Results
• What Students Want the Most:
-Access to the “players” in theatre companies and arts organizations.
-Understanding the politics and cultures of how different organizations work and decisions are made.
-Opportunities to mix and mingling with professionals
-Getting to know other interns—the people they’ll be working with in the future.
• Real Work Experience:
-Understanding use of real budgets, planning processes, and scheduling
-Being exposed to resources, product, and capital that really exist and mean something.
-Being placed in an environment where there are professional systems and protocols.
-Building a network.
-Making connections to larger community and national theatre trends.

A big special thanks to the following students for their insight and participation-your contribution to this research has been invaluable: Hunter Bird, Lisa Dring, Mira Greene, Marisa Johnston, Jaeeun Joon, Chelsea Larkin, Yanda Li, Alex Lydon, Elena Muslar, Rachel Saltzman, Laura Swanson, Michael Vanderbilt, Erika Varela, and Ashley Walden

On a side note: Theatre Communications Group (TCG) had their annual conference here in Los Angeles and I was able to finally meet Mohammad Shatara, TCG’s Artistic Programs Associate who has been helping with everything to do with this grant so thanks Mo!

Above is a picture of him with Leslie and me celebrating TCG’s 50th Birthday out at the Music Center Plaza. Cheers to TCG for helping us to do this great research!