An Intern's Perspective

An Intern’s Perspective

Pens clicked, voices chattered, and chairs scooted in as the Intro to Community Media class began. The room contained a wide variety of interests, ages, and levels of experience. I personally was at the lower end of the age and experience spectrum. Other than producing videos as a hobby since I received my first camera, I have little experience in the world of media. 

My name is Mary Beth Beatty and I am a rising senior at George Mason University. After three years of studying nursing, I made the daring, possibly irresponsible, but ultimately fulfilling decision to switch my major to Communication with a concentration in Media Production. I was introduced to Arlington Independent Media through Paul LeValley, or rather, Professor LeValley, as he was my professor at George Mason University. Amidst a curriculum of marketing, advertising, and rhetorical analysis, I was intrigued by the work that Paul would often speak about. “What is community media?” I wondered. As fate would have it, I saw that a Summer internship was available at AIM, and I jumped at the opportunity. Several weeks later, here I am, ready to engage into media production and a community of critical thinkers and producers!

Now, back to class.

The shuffling ceased and the Intro class began. Jackie Steven, Director of Community Programs, began the session with a quick personal introduction, followed by an invitation for us to do the same. Amongst us sat the founders of a nonprofit, a pastor of a Church, an intrigued businessman with previous radio experience, and a fresh college graduate, to name a few. Together, however, we were all simply media consumers, sitting ready to discover our place in community media.

 Jaws dropped as we learned that 95 percent of the information we consume comes from only five or six main corporations. Relief sank in, however, upon learning that Arlington Independent Media’s place in the community allows for an added, independent voice, that comes with no strings attached.  

Before giving away all of the goodies from that night’s class, however, I’ll interject with a few of my own observations. In the confines of a small radio/Television station in the heart of Arlington, I witnessed twelve men and women gather together to learn about community media. These men and women are embarking on a path marked with increased understanding of radio, television, and audio production, to name just a few of the things they’ll learn. This is a path that has been traveled by thousands before and one that calls for thousands more.

Come join us at Arlington Independent Media this summer! Put yourselves in the world of community media. Allow us to help you raise your voice