Boston, MA: Waking up at 8 a.m. every day for five weeks isn’t a teenager’s ideal way to spend summer. Neither is attending two three-hour classes each day. A typical high schooler’s summer doesn’t consist of making an important college choice, either. I didn’t have a typical summer - I took part in an experience that I will never forget which helped me to realize what career I want to pursue. This summer program is the Institute of Television, Film and Radio Production (ITRP) at Boston University.
At ITRP, high-school students experience college life and attend courses at the College of Communications. The classes included Television Field, Television Studio, Film, Non-Linear Editing and Radio. Students attend three of the five, each for eight days. Depending on the class, students work in larger groups of 20 or small groups of three or four. The classes focus on a specific area with an instructor teaching technique, theory and composition while college students teach participants how to use the equipment. The life and spirit that the TAs bring to the classes keep the mood lighthearted. Joking around constantly in addition to getting an enormous amount of work done creates the impression that the students are at a camp instead of a college summer program.
At the end of each session, students create professional-looking projects and showcase them. They go home with a new knowledge and appreciation of television, film and radio.
After my time at ITRP, I view the fields of entertainment with a different outlook. I look at the cuts of a scene in a motion picture and observe how well the sound is integrated onto the film. The editing techniques I learned help me edit my videos. Television sitcoms continue to inspire and teach me the best way to tell a story with three cameras and when to cut to the next perfectly framed shot.
Before my summer at ITRP, I wanted to make movies and television shows. Now, that desire has turned into a passion and I hope that one day I will be able to express it for the entire world to see.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.