Case study

Festival assistant — Bethany Privitera

In her current role Bethany combines her love for writing and film. Discover how her drama degree gave her the skills to work in the exciting world of festivals

How did you get your job?

I enjoyed screenwriting on my degree and became interested in the film industry, so researched routes into this field and discovered that marketing can be a good way in to many companies.

My university ran a graduate internship scheme and when I saw an advertisement for a marketing assistant for Encounters Film Festival in Bristol, I applied and secured a temporary internship role. After the internship ended, my contract was extended and I have now been given more responsibility.

How relevant is your degree?

My drama degree helped me massively, as I've acquired a critical eye and good team working skills, due to the degree being extremely collaborative.

The degree encouraged me to take on many roles such as directing, researching, technical, writing and acting, and this has given me the rounded knowledge and confidence to take on new tasks, as well as preparing me for working within the arts sector in general.

Having a drama degree has also helped when meeting people too, because I feel qualified to talk about many areas within theatre and film and feel confident in contributing to conversations.

What's a typical day like?

My duties change day-to-day depending on what event we are working on, but organisation and prioritisation of workload are always key.

Most days involve replying to filmmakers' enquiries about the festival, assisting with print transport, creating artwork, updating social media, attending meetings with our partners or watching films.

What do you enjoy about your job?

The team ethic is great, as everyone really cares about the work we're doing. I also love the variety of event work, as my tasks differ every day, which keeps things interesting.

What are the challenges?

Having to learn new skills quickly. Sometimes I have to research how to use a piece of software and master it, but at the end I've learned a new skill.

Where do you hope to be in five years?

As well as my paid marketing role, I volunteer and work on personal writing projects. I've also secured some work experience within a post-production house too. I hope to be earning money from writing within the next five years.

What advice can you give to others?

Utilise your time at university in as many ways as you can. This will help you to transition into graduate work.

Include university and extracurricular projects on your CV, e.g. films, theatrical pieces, and essays, so you have lots of experience and skills to highlight to employers.

I completed work experience while I was at university, which I would advise, as it's a good way of making connections and demonstrating your commitment to future employers.

Also, keep applying for jobs. Rejections are normal, but keep going and you'll get something soon enough.

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