The past year has been nerve-wracking as our campus family has been embracing lion pride from afar. Despite the effects of the global COVID-19 pandemic, we continue to connect, collaborate, and generate ideas to fulfill our call to action in the ever-changing spaces around us. We sat down with two grad school students to discuss navigating school during a pandemic.
To maintain our close-knit community, we asked graduate students for advice on all things Emerson, grad life, and adjusting to city-living in the historic town of Boston. From making friends to learning the MBTA system; from managing a full course load; from landing internships to sharing our favorite hang-out spots, we’ve got you covered.
Name: Courtney Burness
Program of Study: ‘20 Writing for Film and Television MFA Alum
Location: Los Angeles, Californi
Currently living in sunny Los Angeles, Courtney gave us the inside scoop on her experience as a low residency alum of the Writing for Film and Television MFA program at Emerson.
As a 100% online degree, all coursework is asynchronous with interwoven synchronous workshops to fit students’ schedules, which Courtney explained is helpful due to the current remote environment the world is living in with the coronavirus pandemic.
“Living in this new world where everything is online, learning how to run a mock writers room or give and take notes virtually has been incredibly invaluable in the job I have now [in talent management].”
Most aspects of her job have fully transitioned to Zoom calls and other virtual methods of clientele interaction, but because of Courtney’s Emerson experience, she handles her job with ease.
When we asked Courtney how she’ll be able to use these skills in the future, she smiled brightly.
“It will be [so] valuable in my next job in a writers room as a writer’s assistant or show writer’s assistant.”
Name: Hanna Shemke
Program of Study: ’20 Publishing and Writing MA Alum
Location: Detroit, Michigan
As a recent Publishing & Writing graduate, Hanna completed the remaining Spring 2020 and entire Fall 2020 semester online from her childhood home in Michigan. Despite being completely remote, she raved about her experience in the Publishing & Writing Masters program.
“The one skill that I have learned that will certainly aid me and put me ahead of other competitors in the job field after graduation is absolutely our required copyediting course.“
She went on to explain the core competencies of the class.
“You learn how to content edit, line edit, micro edit, you really get a comprehensive understanding of the Chicago Manual of Style, which is really beneficial when you are applying to certain internships.”
In November, Hanna landed an editorial internship with Harvard University’s Alumni Association, which she heavily attributes to her copyediting and CMS skillsets.
“Harvard does a lot of internships with Emerson students, and a lot of their requirements… have to meet the needs of understanding the Chicago Manual of Style and pass Emerson’s copyediting course.”
We asked Hanna what she values about her Emerson experience as a Publishing & Writing graduate, she emphasized the importance of the liberty students can take when building their schedules, which impacted her significantly.
“You can really just design your own program as a student here, so I [also] really focus on a lot of marketing and brand building tactics, so I can fuse together my passion for content creation and the technical skills necessary to build a successful marketing campaign for book releases or any other form of promotion and product execution relative to the publishing industry.”
Overall, Hanna had an incredible experience at Emerson that she will take with her into the publishing industry.
Have questions? Want to chat about starting your very own Emerson adventure? Make a virtual appointment with our Graduate Admission Student Ambassadors!