Dr. Gregory Bray, Associate Professor of Digital Media and Journalism was fully immersed in the television world last summer, where he went behind the scenes, toured the Warner Brothers studio lot and heard presentations from people in the business.
He was selected as one of 25 professors from universities and colleges nationwide to attend the Television Academy Faculty Fellowship in California. Bray applied early last spring and was selected to attend this past summer for the November Faculty Seminar.
The Television Academy Foundation was established in 1959, originally to provide resources and knowledge in order to educate future and present television professionals.
According to their website, there are a plethora of programs the Academy offers including: Internship Program, Visiting Professionals Program, Faculty Seminar, College Television Awards and The Interviews: An Oral History of Television.
The cohort of members who attended learned from each other and other professionals in the TV field. They spoke of how different programs worked in the classroom.
“What makes it an honor is that it’s the industry’s way of acknowledging that the work we do is meaningful, and that the industry views our classes as the professional pipeline,” Bray said. “I gained valuable insight from the people working in the dream factory which I can bring back to the classroom and share with students.”
The “Game of Thrones” panel spoke of how students can learn and understand the techniques of writing and, according to Bray, “understanding history and social issues and even basics such as knowing how to draw [and it’s] what really helped their employees land their positions.”
Each day of the week-long experience was filled with seminars and speakers from various niches in the business. The group met with former chair people, executive producers, television directors, editors and many more.
A few of the names included: Nina Tassler (former chairwoman, CBS Entertainment), Executive Producer Craig Plestis (“Survivor,” “America’s Got Talent,” “The Masked Singer”) and Olivia De Carlo (Director, Product Launch Strategy, Netflix).
“In addition we met television directors who worked on ‘The Office,’ ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,’ ‘The Voice’ and ‘Queen Sugar,’ as well as TV editors who have worked on such shows as ‘The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina,’ FX’s ‘Fargo’ and ‘Supernatural’,” Bray said. “It was a jam packed week.”