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Getting a Job as a Production Director

I'm currently a senior in High School who is interested in pursuing a career in Video Production. I have a few questions that would greatly help me in understanding the industry and choosing my first steps wisely:
1. What major is best suited for getting a job on a Film/Television set?
2. How long does it take to work up the job hierarchy from a PA to a Production Director.
3. What activities should I be doing besides school to make my resume more attractive to hiring managers.
4. Should I try to make a name for myself in the Indie scene or focus on getting acquainted with the corporate environment of bigger production studios, even if that means working for minimum wage with little responsibilities.
5. What is the best way to network with people already established in the industry? Should I go to festivals or use social media?

Thank you comment icon Hi, Spencer! These are all great questions. In the future, please post them each as a separate question (per our Community Guidelines). It is much easier for Professionals to answer one question at a time, and that means you’re more likely to get great advice! Thanks for using CareerVillage 🙂 Alexandra Carpenter, Admin
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Todd’s Answer

I can provide an answer to your questions 1 & 3, as my son is currently in college for film/television, as he also enjoyed video production in high school. Knowing what he wanted to major in helped us narrow down his college search for schools that offered Communications programs with a focus on Production. He knew he wanted to have the opportunities for internships as well as potential employment after graduation, so we narrowed his search further to only include large cities so he'd have easy access to large production companies. He's currently majoring in Digital Media at a state college near New York City. Many of his professors work (or had worked) in the industry and the studio equipment is some of the latest technology, so he can be hands-on with what's used in the industry.

As you're in Texas, maybe do some searches for schools near big cities like Houston to see which ones offer majors and programs that could help you work towards this career. If going to school near a large city is not convenient for you right now, then look into community colleges that have these programs, as you can get a 2 year degree there and then consider a move to a 4-year university.

Best of luck to you.

Todd recommends the following next steps:

Searches for schools near big cities in Texas to see which ones offer majors and programs for video production
Consider community colleges that offer these programs and then consider a move to a 4-year university if that works better for you
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Amanda’s Answer

Hey there :-)
Theater and/or film can definitely be a great major to start off with in college. I took Theater as my minor in college and we had to participate in every production our university performed and I was able to do everything from building the sets to lighting and sound and even work on costumes and make-up. I didn't get in to the Film side however, so something to definitely look in to if you want to get in to television or film. You mights want to focus your college search on an arts/film school that is specific to what you are looking for since you seem to know exactly what you want.
Good luck :-) Hope this was helpful
Thank you comment icon Your advice was so helpful! Luis G.