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Is it hard to get a job with a degree in digital media/cinema?

I'm considering this major because it's something I'm more passionate about but I'm not sure I want to do it if it won't support me in the future.

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Subject: Career question for you

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Jaeger’s Answer

Isabelle, that's a very insightful and smart question to be asking about your future career. You're very fortunate in that if you choose to remain in California, you are in a very (perhaps the most) bountiful and lucrative location in the world to make a living and excel at a career in digital media and cinema/film. If you're experimenting with your interests and passions in media and film, California and major metropolitan cities hold the advantage in allowing you to be specialized in whatever role you want to pursue within those mediums. For example, if you were working as a video production person in, say, Montana, you'd probably be expected to wear a lot of hats. You might be the only person on a creative team, so you might be expected to film footage with a camera, light the sets, record the sound and dialogue, conduct interviews with on air talent or actors, edit the footage after it has been shot, and even do animation work or coloring! In a media centric place like Los Angeles, you can get a ton of experience in all aspects of the digital media or cinema industries, and find out what you enjoy to do the most, and pursue that. You might be able to gain experience as a production assistant on a film set, and while they are usually doing odds and ends jobs that are asked of them, it allows you to interact with other people on set and find out what you want to do. You might find that you'd like to be a sound mixer or a boom operator, or a gaffer or grip, or a director of photography or script supervisor. Then, you can pursue those positions in earnest and carve out a position for yourself.

Make no mistake, film folk and digital media people can make very good livings for themselves, but they often have to go where the work is. That might mean, for most people, relocating to place like Washington DC, New York City, Atlanta, or Los Angeles. What these people is a finely tuned skill, built up over many years in their respective crafts, and they enjoy the compensation and benefits that go with it, in both monetary form and the enjoyment that comes from making art for a living. My suggestion to you would be to get as much experience as you can with as many people who work in the industry as you can, and find out further what you'd like to pursue more.
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Carl’s Answer

Hi Isabelle. Thanks for asking this question. I will preface my answer with the fact that I don't work in digital media but I'll do the best I can to give you my perspective. From a technology perspective, I do believe digital media will continue to evolve as new technologies are introduced. For example, augmented reality, virtual reality, and mobile video use data analytics. This fuels digital media. In other words, these evolving technologies create new ways for digital media providers to gather data which then provides information that advertisers use to connect with consumers. This is where digital media comes into play. A convergence of data analytics collected by these new tools will fuel the demand for more content. Digital media is that content. If finding an employer that will not provide you with an adequate compensation package is difficult, I would suggest working independently. As these new technologies continue to evolve, the need for content on digital media will continue to grow. Whether it be providing the content or supporting the platforms in which the content resides, you can play a role in this industry.
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Genevieve’s Answer

Hi Isabelle here's another perspective. I went to film school! I don't do anything with film at all. I also originally went to school for music and now I do data analytics. Moral of that is a lot of companies are going to look at the fact you have a degree not what the degree is in. You learn a lot outside of your major when you receive your degree like interpersonal, time management and social skills and that is really important to companies. I suggest you go to school for that since you're interested in that and it would ensure that you'll at least like what you're studying and excel in your studies. Best case scenario is that you love it, love it as a career, and excel. Worst case is that you loved going to school and work in another field. The relevancy of your degree is not as important as you think so if that field isn't working out, you'll be safe in knowing that you can still find a job. And if you do find a job in this field, people will be impressed by your knowledge. Enjoy school by studying something that you'll enjoy and take it from there.
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