Screen and Media Student Internship Story!

Meet Daniel Nava, Gaining Experience Through Internship

A conversation with ACDC Screen and Media student Daniel Nava on his experience from recent internship in creative industry. Delve into his journey,  uncover his key takeaways, and gather insightful tips for students planning to explore internships in the vibrant Australian creative field.



Interviewer: We are here with one of our students who recently finished his internship through with ACDC Screen and Media Course, Hi Daniel, thank you for coming today, can you tell us a little about yourself?


Daniel: First of all, thank you for having me. My name is Daniel Nava. I am 27 years old and I come from Mexico. I was born in Mexico City and I’ve been living here in Australia for almost 2 years. I originally came to Study Screen and Media Diploma and I had the opportunity to have an internship in the industry related to screen and media which was very interesting and I’m very grateful for that opportunity.


Interviewer: How did you find this internship? Did you get it from the school or from outside?


Daniel: I got it through my school, ACDC which is Australian City Design College. Through Tani (Tania), she is the internship program Co-ordinator at ACDC and she is in charge of all of these internship things in the school. She sent me an email, I matched the profile they were looking for, so I applied for the internship. That’s how I got it, basically through the school.


Interviewer: Can you tell us about the process of the interview for the selection?


Daniel: To be honest, it was pretty similar to applying  for any other job, even back in Mexico. In this case, it was an internship through the school. When she sent me the email, I was very interested, so I decided to apply. I gathered My Portfolio, updated my CV, and just sent it to apply for the internship. I had a couple of interviews with Robin who is the manager of the company. He was more than pleased with the interview and I started the internship.


Interviewer: Can you tell us about the interview? What kind of questions did they ask? In this screen and media field, what kind of questions can students expect?


Daniel: It will depend on the nature of the company. In this case, the company is dedicated to content creation, specifically videos and photography for different companies like real estate or site renovation, and projects like caravans. The position I was applying for was video editing. It was 100% related to the screen and media diploma I was doing, using Adobe Premiere, After Effects, basically video editing software. I showed some of the videos I did in the diploma course. That helped Robin to have an idea of my skills and experience.


Interviewer: I followed your application process very closely. Multiple people applied, I had a meeting with the manager, and he said that you were one of the best options. Do you have any tips on how you prepared your CV or your portfolio? What made you stand out?


Daniel: I dedicated a few hours to the design of my CV. It’s very important to make sure all the information is correct, no grammar mistakes. Also, my experience in areas like industrial design and photography backed me up and made me a multidisciplinary candidate for the position. Putting creativity and your own style into your portfolio or CV really makes a difference. I think it’s very important to pay attention to those details if you want to apply in this field.

Other works of  Daniel Nava


Interviewer: For students without a background in screen and media and without a portafolio, what do you recommend? Do you recommend including class projects in the portfolio?


Daniel: Yes, the screen and media diploma is a good chance to start your portfolio. Dedicate time to your assessments and really try to put effort into that time. Also, complement that with not just applying what you learn in the course, which is really good and important, but also try to go a little bit further. You can find everything online nowadays. If you go on YouTube, you can find a lot of tutorials to learn how to do things. So just try to push your assessments the best way you can. When you end your diploma, you’ll have three or four projects that are worth showing in your portfolio. Also, I would recommend looking for freelance projects outside of the course. So if you have a friend or if you know someone who might be interested in getting, for example, a video edited or some photography or anything related to the course, I think that really adds up in terms of experience. So that would be really good for you to start building your portfolio.


Interviewer: Now about the internship, what did you do there? What was the process?


Daniel: Well, it basically started when I received  the confirmation of the internship, I was naturally very happy. I began by doing some video editing. However, at the outset, my expertise in video editing was somewhat limited. While I was familiar with what I had learned in my diploma, I didn’t have much practical experience. They assigned me a few projects and provided the necessary materials, which in this case were finished videos. Initially, I worked on projects that were already completed, using them as reference material. Then, I had to edit entirely new videos, incorporating my creative input. This process served as training, and we repeated it multiple times with multiple projects. This helped me gain experience and become more adept at using the software, improving my workflow. By the end of the internship, I was able to work on actual projects with real clients, which was more demanding but also provided valuable exposure to real-life projects and situations.

Interviewer: Would you recommend doing an internship to students? Do you think it helps with skills or finishing the course?


Daniel: Of course, the only downside of that here in Australia is that most internships, if not all, are unpaid. So, that definitely consumes some of your time that you could otherwise use for personal projects or paid work. But I believe if your goal is to land a job in the industry, an internship is simply the best way to do it. That’s how you gain insight into the industry and its workings. And, yeah, you can get a sense of what it’s like to work for a real company. So, yeah, it’s definitely beneficial.


Interviewer: Do you feel like your skills improved? How are your skills in screen media before and after the internship?


Daniel: I mean, of course, there was a lot of improvement. I’m actually really happy with the results. As I mentioned, my experience before the internship was very limited, specifically in video editing, which is what I was doing during the internship. So, yeah, it was quite limited. However, having several months to work on this project really helped me build up the experience I needed. Firstly, it boosted my confidence in the work I’m doing. Secondly, it significantly improved my workflow, allowing me to edit videos much faster than I did initially. And thirdly, it provided me with insight into how the industry operates. So, I definitely consider it a game-changer in terms of skill improvement.


Interviewer: What can you tell us about how it is to work in this field in Australia?


Daniel: Well, specifically in the creative industry, I mean, of course, I have my other job which is not related to the industry, but yeah, specifically working in a creative industry, well, this scenario, I think, is different from my country in terms of, for example, the payments. Once you land a good job, the payments are way better, needless to say. Yeah, we kind of don’t have to mention that, right? What the companies, I think, expect from you in terms of your time, it’s more human or, yeah, more flexible. Let’s say it’s more flexible, I think. Well, at least where I come from, getting a job in a creative industry or in a company is almost like getting married. They demand a lot of your time, effort, and attention. So here, you can have a good life balance; you can work on your projects and have this job in the industry. But at the same time, it’s balanced out with time for yourself, which of course is really, really important. So, yeah, that’s really, really nice.


Interviewer: Could you give us like 3 tips for the students that are starting internship to make the most of it?


Daniel: Firstly, make sure your portfolio and CV are in top shape, even if you’re light on experience. When working on your screen media diploma projects, put your best foot forward. Keep things professional, with no grammar slip-ups. If you’re unsure, don’t hesitate to ask a native speaker or use tools like ChatGPT or Google Translate. Presentation counts, so go for a clean, colorful layout that showcases you and your work nicely.

Secondly, take charge and be proactive. If you snag an interview, show them you’re ready for anything. Keep communication open and take the initiative with your tasks. Being professional is a must, especially during an internship. Remember, success might mean giving up some time, but it’s worth it in the end.

Lastly, don’t throw in the towel. Whether it’s scoring an internship or a job in any industry, including the creative field, persistence pays off. It might take a while to break in, but keep pushing. Rejection doesn’t mean you’re not up to par; it just means you haven’t found the right fit yet. Australia’s brimming with opportunities, so stick with it, and you’ll get there.


Interviewer: Thank you, Dani, for your time. It was amazing hearing about your experience. Now, since you’ve mentioned all these opportunities, I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know that on the 30th of April, if you’re still in Melbourne, we have a student event. Rising Sun Pictures, a major company in the field that has worked on movies like Marvel and Deadpool, will be making a presentation at the school. They will talk about the company, various roles in visual effects, pathways to visual effects careers, graduate opportunities, and will also answer student questions. It’s not every day that you can learn from a company like this, let alone have a Q and A with them, so I wanted to make this known to you, and in fact anyone who might be interested.


Daniel: Wow. So it will be like a huge thing.  I’ll definitely make some space for that one because it sounds super interesting.



Find more about Daniel’s  work here:


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