LMU Television Writing and Producing MFA - Jobs, Internships, and Scholarships

Dorothy

Member
Chapman
I will be attending Chapman University's Television Writing and Producing program for Fall 2018. I am writing to LMU students specifically because the Fall 2018 class will be the first to go through the MFA program. Anyone who completed Chapman's BFA can chime in as well. I tried to communicate with members on this site but haven't gotten a response. My questions are related to job prospects after the program. From your experience do you, other students, or alumni who have gotten internships and jobs due to their education and experience gained through school? Is it difficult to find internships and jobs during the program? Does it seem like television networks or other employers care about the fact that applicants have the knowledge and skill gained from school? Do you have any advice in that regard or know anyone that I can talk to?

Any response would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you.
 

Hey! Can you tell me about your experience so far? I applied for the same program for entry next year. I’m interested in how you feel about it
 

SavSolo

Member
Hey! Can you tell me about your experience so far? I applied for the same program for entry next year. I’m interested in how you feel about it
Hey all. I’m a first year in the LMU writing for the screen program. Slightly different from writing and producing for the screen but I’d be happy to answer any of your questions. So far I have fallen in love with LMU, I applied to about four or five other schools and LMU was tied for my first choice with USC. Although USC is one of the best programs, LMU appealed to me because of the small class sizes and intense focus on portfolio and continuing rewrites on drafts which other universities do not focus on too much, at least from what I gathered when I went and spoke to them in person. After being rejected from USC, I jumped at the opportunity when LMU called. It is a three year program which takes less stress away from flying through a two year program. They really emphasize that the end product of the program is you working in the industry. So far they’ve told us first years that we shouldn’t stress about internships till our second year second semester. Right now they want you to work on students sets and gain experience learning the behind the scenes, how to use cameras, how to set up lights, directing, producing, script supervising, etc. I never had any experiences in those areas till coming to LMU and taking classes that go over the basics and build you from there. They want you to gain experience in every aspect of the film process which is very important, something that I didn’t think I would get the opportunity to do as a writer. They want you to focus your attention your first year on building skills and creating your art. For me right now, I’ve been working on projects for my portfolio. I currently am doing work study and am waiting to look for internships till the summer (as most but not all are sadly unpaid). But I know plenty of people in my program and the prod program who have met with our beloved Internship advisor, some already resulting in internships. He will help with the EVERYTHING. He helps us get our resume up to par and sits down and talks to you about what you’re interests are and what you’re looking for and what you should be looking for in an internship. Professors are really good with informing you on opportunities they’ve heard of through the grapevine as well and mass emails are always sent out with applications to internships and summer programs at least twice a month. There are also a lot of events that LMU holds that are incredible opportunities to network with professionals. Some are mandatory but most are optional. This is a brief overview from my perspective let me know if you have any specific questions and I can attempt to answer them! What I thought was going to be a super competitive program is one that is focused on building connections and friendships and helping each other out and supporting each other any way possible.
 

Shade

Member
Hey all. I’m a first year in the LMU writing for the screen program. Slightly different from writing and producing for the screen but I’d be happy to answer any of your questions. So far I have fallen in love with LMU, I applied to about four or five other schools and LMU was tied for my first choice with USC. Although USC is one of the best programs, LMU appealed to me because of the small class sizes and intense focus on portfolio and continuing rewrites on drafts which other universities do not focus on too much, at least from what I gathered when I went and spoke to them in person. After being rejected from USC, I jumped at the opportunity when LMU called. It is a three year program which takes less stress away from flying through a two year program. They really emphasize that the end product of the program is you working in the industry. So far they’ve told us first years that we shouldn’t stress about internships till our second year second semester. Right now they want you to work on students sets and gain experience learning the behind the scenes, how to use cameras, how to set up lights, directing, producing, script supervising, etc. I never had any experiences in those areas till coming to LMU and taking classes that go over the basics and build you from there. They want you to gain experience in every aspect of the film process which is very important, something that I didn’t think I would get the opportunity to do as a writer. They want you to focus your attention your first year on building skills and creating your art. For me right now, I’ve been working on projects for my portfolio. I currently am doing work study and am waiting to look for internships till the summer (as most but not all are sadly unpaid). But I know plenty of people in my program and the prod program who have met with our beloved Internship advisor, some already resulting in internships. He will help with the EVERYTHING. He helps us get our resume up to par and sits down and talks to you about what you’re interests are and what you’re looking for and what you should be looking for in an internship. Professors are really good with informing you on opportunities they’ve heard of through the grapevine as well and mass emails are always sent out with applications to internships and summer programs at least twice a month. There are also a lot of events that LMU holds that are incredible opportunities to network with professionals. Some are mandatory but most are optional. This is a brief overview from my perspective let me know if you have any specific questions and I can attempt to answer them! What I thought was going to be a super competitive program is one that is focused on building connections and friendships and helping each other out and supporting each other any way possible.
Thanks so much for this! I actually did apply but I was a little on the fence about what to do bc LMU is not as "flashy" as UCLA or USC but tbh, I love all of this. Sounds just like what I'm looking for. Just one question, upon acceptance, what did you need to do? Was there an interview process...? Or were you just admitted?
 

Chris W

As You Wish
Staff member
Thanks so much for this! I actually did apply but I was a little on the fence about what to do bc LMU is not as "flashy" as UCLA or USC but tbh, I love all of this. Sounds just like what I'm looking for. Just one question, upon acceptance, what did you need to do? Was there an interview process...? Or were you just admitted?
A new thread has been started for the 2019 applicants:

LMU Writing for the Screen 2019

This thread is more about the dynamic at the school and not with the current year application process.
 

SavSolo

Member
Just a heads-up: I just received an interview notification from LMU (Writing for the Screen program). It looks like they're doing interviews this year, as opposed to the selection process over the last couple of years?

They send you an email with a Google form and you need to pick a spot for Monday, 28, or Monday, 4 on February.

It seems to be new. I've never heard of LMU doing interviews before but looks like they're implementing this system from now on.

Anyone got theirs?
Congrats on the interview! I received a phone call followed by an email last year, never heard of them doing interviews before either. At our orientation months ago they did say that they received the most applications they have ever received before so that's probably why they've started doing interviews. Good luck and ask about scholarship opportunities! So better to sign up for soonest interview day. They are more likely if they like you to offer you some sort of scholarship if you ask early on!
 

Shade

Member
Thanks! I'm international though, so I'm not sure if I qualify for most US scholarships? Keeping my fingers crossed for a Fulbright scholarship :)
 

Shade

Member
Congrats on the interview! I received a phone call followed by an email last year, never heard of them doing interviews before either. At our orientation months ago they did say that they received the most applications they have ever received before so that's probably why they've started doing interviews. Good luck and ask about scholarship opportunities! So better to sign up for soonest interview day. They are more likely if they like you to offer you some sort of scholarship if you ask early on!
Also, I meant to ask: I'm local to LA despite being international but I live pretty far, up in the Valley. I'm not looking to relocate at the moment (it's about an hour commute from where I am), so I was wondering, more or less, how many classes do you have per week/how many days per week? Just to get an estimate if I get accepted
 

SavSolo

Member
Also, I meant to ask: I'm local to LA despite being international but I live pretty far, up in the Valley. I'm not looking to relocate at the moment (it's about an hour commute from where I am), so I was wondering, more or less, how many classes do you have per week/how many days per week? Just to get an estimate if I get accepted
Three classes! I go to classes two days a week. Some people like to spread it out but my commute can also be an hour some days.
 

WriterK90

Member
Three classes! I go to classes two days a week. Some people like to spread it out but my commute can also be an hour some days.
This is so great to hear. LMU has moved back up to my first choice. I want to be able to go two to three times a week so I can also work an outside internship or job. I also wont have a car starting out, so commuting for hours every day would be exhausting. Culver City is pretty exspensive so I may have to live a little further out.
 

SavSolo

Member
This is so great to hear. LMU has moved back up to my first choice. I want to be able to go two to three times a week so I can also work an outside internship or job. I also wont have a car starting out, so commuting for hours every day would be exhausting. Culver City is pretty exspensive so I may have to live a little further out.
Yes, it is really great! I work part-time with work study. I recommend a desk job or something where you can find time to do homework. Sadly my work study is hands-on with kids so I don't have that luxury. Most of the other people in my program have found more accommodating jobs that have downtime to work on things which I HIGHLY recommend because it can get stressful ar some points. If you're looking for a place look for roommates! I found one on here a year a while back ago at first until I had to move sooner and moved in with friends. Also if you do end up going to LMU there will be plenty of people looking for roommates and there are LMU forums (facebook) where you can post and reach out if you need to. If you do live further and don't have a car this may be helpful Metro U-Pass Pilot Program - Loyola Marymount University
 

WriterK90

Member
Yes, it is really great! I work part-time with work study. I recommend a desk job or something where you can find time to do homework. Sadly my work study is hands-on with kids so I don't have that luxury. Most of the other people in my program have found more accommodating jobs that have downtime to work on things which I HIGHLY recommend because it can get stressful ar some points. If you're looking for a place look for roommates! I found one on here a year a while back ago at first until I had to move sooner and moved in with friends. Also if you do end up going to LMU there will be plenty of people looking for roommates and there are LMU forums (facebook) where you can post and reach out if you need to. If you do live further and don't have a car this may be helpful Metro U-Pass Pilot Program - Loyola Marymount University
Thank you so much for all of this great info! Do you know the average amount awarded with scholarships? 1k, 5k, 10k? Has anyone gotten fully funded? LMU doesn't list very much on their website but if i'm accepted I will definitely ask them directly. I'm just wondering what to expect.

Oh- And do they offer special grants for laptops or tablets by any chance? My current one may not last through grad school and I know some schools help out with required tech.
 

SavSolo

Member
Thank you so much for all of this great info! Do you know the average amount awarded with scholarships? 1k, 5k, 10k? Has anyone gotten fully funded? LMU doesn't list very much on their website but if i'm accepted I will definitely ask them directly. I'm just wondering what to expect.

Oh- And do they offer special grants for laptops or tablets by any chance? My current one may not last through grad school and I know some schools help out with required tech.
No problem! And I'm unsure on the amount. They are starting interviews so be prepared to ask if you get one. Depending on how much they liked your application they may offer you something on the spot or you have to put yourself out there and not be afraid to ask. Also, I've noticed those who are coming from further are more likely to get scholarships as well. Not sure about the grant thing! All the grad buildings have plenty of computers though and the library checkout laptops I believe but don't quote me on that haha.
 

WriterK90

Member
Thanks so much! And I do have an interview for next week. I wasn't sure if it was too soon to ask about scholarships but i will now, for sure! :)
 

SavSolo

Member
Awesome good luck! And yes don't be afraid to ask! Think of it this way, you are also interviewing them they know they aren't the only school you applied for. If you ask early on you are more likely than other people to get something. Also have some other questions prepared. Always best to have some good questions ready when you get to the "So do you have any questions for us?" part of the discussion. Hope all goes well!
 

Shade

Member
Three classes! I go to classes two days a week. Some people like to spread it out but my commute can also be an hour some days.
Thank you! Is there a lot of theoretical work? Or is it mostly workshops? And if so, is most of the workload theoretical or hands-on (writing, re-writing, etc.)
 

SavSolo

Member
Starts out with theory but you do get some workshopping in the first semester as well, also a production class where you get to write, film, and direct your own short film. They really want to build you from the foundation up and get everyone on the same page which is really nice. I'm currently on my second semester here and I have one theory class and two workshop classes where we are jumping into writing. If you're going into writing for the screen here are the classes you would be taking Required Courses - Loyola Marymount University
 

Shade

Member
Starts out with theory but you do get some workshopping in the first semester as well, also a production class where you get to write, film, and direct your own short film. They really want to build you from the foundation up and get everyone on the same page which is really nice. I'm currently on my second semester here and I have one theory class and two workshop classes where we are jumping into writing. If you're going into writing for the screen here are the classes you would be taking Required Courses - Loyola Marymount University
Thank you! Do you know if they also offer scholarships to internationals?

I'm sort of afraid of asking this question in the interview in case I might be squandering my chances.
 

SavSolo

Member
Thank you! Do you know if they also offer scholarships to internationals?

I'm sort of afraid of asking this question in the interview in case I might be squandering my chances.
I'm unsure! I'm sure they do though! Ask, don't be afraid. The sooner you ask the more likely they'll be to offer you something or be aware that you are seeking a scholarship and they can lead you in the right direction.
 

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