Paul Edwards, a UNC alumnus turned Hollywood screenwriter and director said that when he moved to Los Angeles years ago to find a job, that he knew only one person involved in the entertainment industry.
After making a name for himself, Edwards took on the job of director of UNC’s Hollywood Media Internship program to give students A-list internships he never had.
“I can teach students in two months what it took me five years to learn,” he said.
A part of the Department of Communication Studies, the program gives a select group of students access to one of the most difficult industries in the nation.
In addition to lining up summer internships for students, the program brings in professional actors, producers, directors and writers for seminars and information sessions. Both the seminars and the internship count for course credit.
The department is currently accepting applications for the program until 4 p.m. Thursday. The program begins June 10 and runs through August 10.
“When the interns come in as a group, you get a support system for each other that some of us who came as pioneers didn’t have to our advantage,” Edwards said.
Currently, the program is restricted to those majoring in communications or minoring in writing for the screen and stage.
Edwards, who selected 12 students for the program last year, personally contacts various organizations for unpaid internships depending on the students’ personal interests. Students typically work for production companies under producers, directors or writers.