Cameron Jackson, BEAU student success (From Intern to Employee)
Published on October 19, 2015 by Bob Trewartha
From Intern to Employee
Written by Cameron Jackson
Throughout my life I’ve been fortunate enough to experience many things that have taught me a great deal about myself. At the age of 33 I’d come to the conclusion that there was no future for me working the job that I’d had for the last 13 years. I knew for a long time that I wasn’t happy but it was now time to start taking the necessary steps to move towards something else. My first step was to enroll in school here at Broadview Entertainment Arts University (BEAU).
As a student I knew only two things. I knew that I wanted to do something in film and television and that I absolutely did not want to be doing what I was doing. Because I am not a patient person, it was not always easy to accept the fact that I was going to have to stay employed full-time with my current employer while I worked to get my degree but I did exactly than, and the further I progressed in school, the more I was certain that my current job was not for me.
On several occasions I expressed my concerns with some of my teachers and in particular the dean, Mark Sorenson. I told him I was feeling spread thin and because of my work schedule and my commute I felt confined to classes that were mostly generals, not really motivating me towards my ultimate goal of leaving my current job. Mark was awesome, making me feel like he took what I was saying to heart and I could tell he immediately began racking his brain to find solutions to my predicament. What he suggested was an internship with Jimmy Francis editing a show for ABC channel 4.
The minute I met Jimmy I knew he was a great guy. We sat down and talked about some of my goals with school, an internship and my availability and we decided there would definitely be a lot both of us could gain by working together. Two days a week I would be helping him edit the show, “The Younger You” for ABC.
From that point forward I treated the internship like a class. I tried to be there whenever I was expected, do all that I was asked, and express my gratitude for the opportunity to learn from professionals. This was not one sided. Jimmy was great at expressing his appreciation, making sure I understood how to do what was being asked, and was more than understanding anytime something came up preventing me from coming in that day. Jimmy and I were becoming pretty good friends and I continued to learn from everything I was doing.
Soon I was given my own episode to edit, start to finish, which would prove to be a challenging learning experience but very rewarding in the end. While working the episode, Jimmy told me of some jobs at ABC that had come open and suggested I apply. He said if I were to do so, he would gladly give them a recommendation and tell them of the great work I had been doing for him. I was actually taken aback with how much he was rooting for me and how willing he was to do anything he could to help me out.
I put in for the job, but knowing that the producer of the show had also applied, I wasn’t terribly optimistic. Ultimately that job went to someone else, but after a conversation with Jimmy, we decided it may not be a bad idea for me to come into the station and mingle with some of the others hiring for different jobs at ABC. Jimmy introduced me to a lot people and he always accompanied my name with “he’s been doing great work for me and he’s definitely a hard worker.” One of those people was the manager of the Master Control Hub who currently had a job opening. She asked me to email her my resume and advised me to apply online for the job. I wasted no time, and before the end of the day she had my resume in her inbox and I’d applied online for the position.
A week and a half after meeting Susan, she emailed me asking me when I would be available to interview. I let her know of my availability and we decided on a day and time that worked best for both of us. Excited but nervous, I arrived for the interview about ten minutes early, dressed in business casual with a tie. It had been years since my last job interview but I’d actually watched a video online recently that covered the basics so I was pretty confident at this point.
The interview went well and I was sure to thank her for her time. She made it sound like I would be getting the job and told me they generally send an email with a job offer two or three days after the job interview. I tried not to get too excited until I knew for sure the job was mine.
Three days later while struggling through another day at my current job I received an email offering me the job. I was ecstatic! While the job is a bit of a pay cut and kind of an entry level position it’s amazing to me to think I’ll be working somewhere with so many more opportunities to learn and advance in an industry I’ve always wanted to be a part of! Just like the internship, it will allow me to branch out, meet people with common interest and it really feels like for the first time in a long time, the possibilities are endless.
When I told Jimmy I got the job he was more than happy for me and excited that we would be working more together. I turned in a letter of resignation with my current employer and have no intention of looking back. If you ask Jimmy he’d tell you that I got the job all on my own and that he didn’t have much to do with it, but this I know for sure: it wouldn’t have happened without the internship and the awesome people I met during that time. The whole process has been surreal and it was amazing to see so many people working for me and determined to see me succeed.