Category: GEMA, GEMA Externship

Title:My Externship Story: Nancy Lan (B’06)

Growing up in Los Angeles, I was constantly exposed to the entertainment industry. Even before entering high school, I was pretty aware that I wanted to work in media or entertainment, but the problem was: I did not know how or where to start. So after high school, I stopped viewing that career path as a feasible possibility. I admit, I did not come to Georgetown with a career in media in mind, but participating in the GEMA Externship helped me realize entertainment as a possible career path by clarifying all of the myths that I had previously believed of the industry.

Think of the GEMA Externship as an “Entertainment and Media for Dummies” guidebook. The guidebook Preface is the instructions you receive prior to leaving for L.A. and the Introduction chapter of this guidebook is your first day in L.A. meeting the rest of the externs. Subsequent to that, each person you are scheduled to meet with during that week is a separate Chapter in the guidebook. Each Chapter will teach you something different and offer you another perspective on the entertainment industry. The Chapters will be honest, clear, and in most cases, extremely entertaining. After a week, you will finish with a new understanding and excitement for the industry, but be warned, you will be exhausted from reading three to five guidebook chapters a day for a straight week through.

The GEMA Externship for me, proved to be enormously rewarding. I learned more about the entertainment industry and L.A. traffic in that one week than I did in all of years of living in Los Angeles. It also helped me make contacts with people I would otherwise never have gotten the chance to cross paths with. I learned about the business and creative sides both the Television and Film industries, the specifics of each area, and discovered my interest in the area of development. The Externship also took me by surprise by showing me exactly what “Georgetown Forever” means. Every alumnus I met with took valuable time from his or her busy days to accommodate the externs with such genuine enthusiasm and concern, something hard to come by in such a fast paced industry.

I returned from the externship, inspired and ready to apply what I had learned. Rich Batista, Sylvia Robinson from the Career Center, another extern, and I were able to meet and collaborate on starting a student organization for undergraduates interested in the field that resulted in: the Georgetown Entertainment & Media club (GEM). My participation in the program also helped me find a summer internship with Mark Burnett Productions this past summer. My GEMA Externship experience has been a more valuable learning experience than I could have ever imagined it to be. This Externship really is a one of a kind experience.