Hannah Kotler, 2020, TV Guide Magazine, New York City

(I’m not allowed to take any pictures inside the office, so here I am holding some magazines outside the building at 50 Rock).

Hi there! I’m Hannah and I’m a rising senior majoring in English at Skidmore with strong interests in journalism, specifically in magazines, and the writing/publishing world. My background consists mainly of entertainment and lifestyle writing, and this summer I’ve had the amazing opportunity to serve as an editorial intern for TV Guide Magazine in New York City! I love it here at the magazine, where I’ve gotten the chance to write for our website, conduct interviews with a range of actors, do extensive research for writers, explore archives, transcribe interviews, contact publicists, and perform many more fun and exciting editorial tasks.

Every day consists of something new to learn and do, and I’m fortunate enough to be able to support our print endeavors as well as digital and social. I’ve gotten the chance to pitch and write my own stories, gaining valuable clips and building on my WordPress knowledge (happy to be applying that right here in this blog post). Perhaps my favorite part of the internship is getting to conduct interviews (both over the phone and in person) with people I’ve admired and loved for many years on my television screen—allowing me experiences that truly feel unreal sometimes.  And even my editorial tasks are fun! While transcribing interviews may feel tedious to some, I get to listen to many talented people talk about their work—and often about projects that have yet to come out! Researching through the magazine’s archives is something I enjoy as well. The office has plenty of back rooms full of print editions, dating back to long before I was born (the magazine has been around since the 1950s), which are quite a trip to go through when I need to pull stories for writers. In addition to doing other editorial tasks, I also get to attend edit meetings and daily morning meetings where I learn more about the daily operations of the magazine.

(Here’s a picture I took of some of the cast of the Netflix show Orange Is the New Black at an event I went to at the Empire State Building to interview them).

My time at TV Guide has been so rewarding and unlike anything I’ve gotten to do before, and it’s something that would not have been possible without funding from Skidmore. Magazines are a great place to work and learn, but their experiences often come unpaid and for school credit. Being from Connecticut, I was especially reliant on funding to secure housing in New York City in order to carry out this internship. And, yes the rumors are true, NYC isn’t cheap, so this funding has been essential to, well, the essentials: food, subway fare, and the like.

I hope many more Skidmore students interested in journalism and writing can have the same opportunities through SEF funding. At the risk of sounding corny for the next few sentences…you won’t lose anything by applying to SEF, but you can gain a whole lot. I submitted my application not knowing at all what I would be doing this summer, and I found that things just have a funny way of working themselves out. Definitely don’t be discouraged if you aren’t selected for funding in a particular year! I applied to SEF in the past and didn’t get it, but I now know it just wasn’t my time and it wasn’t the right time, because I wouldn’t have been able to do this experience now.  As an aside, I also found my internship through a good old-fashioned Google search, so don’t limit yourself to how you find your next job. Okay, that’s enough lecturing. Thank you again, SEF, for this incredible summer!

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