With an internship at Comedy Central in New York under her belt, Stefani Robinson ’14 is ready to take on Hollywood.
“I’ve learned a lot,” said the Writing for Television and Film major, “but I don’t think anything beats actually being in LA to understand how this industry works and how to break in.”
Robinson, of Roswell, Georgia, interned last summer in Comedy Central’s writing department, where she looked over scripts and sat in writers’ meetings for The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. She even got to meet one of the hosts, funnyman Stephen Colbert.
“It was so great. It’s so weird to see someone that you’ve essentially grown up watching just right there in front of you,” she said. “He gives amazing advice and he’s super nice.”
Part-time faculty member Diane Pontius, of the Department of Visual and Media Arts, recommended Robinson for the internship after Robinson wrote a spec script for the show Workaholics.
“Stefani is a significant emerging talent who takes risks with comic content,” Pontius said.
“Emerson’s been super helpful with…getting me prepared for the actual technical writing,” Robinson said. “The environment at Emerson is great…LA is going to [have] so many creative people to collaborate with and bounce ideas off of.”
Robinson is currently writing a screenplay with help from Academy Award–nominated screenwriter David Magee, who wrote Life of Pi and Finding Neverland and taught a screenwriting class at Emerson earlier this year.
“It’s cool that he’s even read my work, let alone given me comments on it,” she said. “I feel lucky that I’ve had this opportunity. It’s awesome.”
A panel of Emerson faculty nominated Robinson and five other students to take part in the Writers Guild of America mentoring program when they arrive in Los Angeles. The program matches students with industry writers who then meet for four 90-minute Skype sessions throughout the semester.
Robinson, who writes for campus comedy troupe Girlie Project and campus magazines, said she has her sights set on interning for late–night TV comedy shows, such as the ones hosted by Craig Ferguson and Conan O’Brien.