Last modified: June 9, 2020
On May 12th, 2020, Cinema Audio Society and members of ACE (American Cinema Editors) and MPSE (Motion Picture Sound Editors) provided mentorship to high school students using a digital tool initially designed for speed dating at the EIPMA-Vaughn International Film Festival Speed Mentoring event.
Produced by KMD Productions and using speed dating software cleverly repurposed for speed networking, professionals could offer a safe way during COVID-19 to keep safe distances and provide invaluable advice and perspective to students. In fact, mentors were located generally in the Los Angeles area and were communicating with students sources from St. Elizabeth Catholic High School in Thornhill, Ontario, Canada.
Hosted by Karen Dunn, the mentors were sourced from EIPMA’s (Entertainment Industry Professionals Mentoring Alliance) organizational partners. The Vaughan International Film Festival, an organization that has worked closely with EIPMA during its formation and is an official partner themselves, found the students.
EIPMA defines itself as a “coalition of trade groups and professional organizations involved in an array of behind-the-scenes art, craft, and technology roles that support the magic of movies, television shows, games, and other media.” Their mission focuses on ensuring the continued success of our industry by educating and mentoring the next generation.
Bernard Weiser, president of EIPMA, explains, “Providing expert guidance to students and individuals seeking meaningful and productive careers in the entertainment industry is what EIPMA is about. We wish to reach out to the diversity of people from around the world and help them tell their story through the multitude of crafts that make up our industry.”
This “Speed Mentoring” concept offered one on one interaction with 20 randomly paired professionals and 20 students. 6-8 minute sessions allowed a variety of matched professionals and students to individualize their experience tailoring it to their career focus and expertise. Questions to stimulate constructive conversation were also available through digital conversation starter cards on screen right. Emmy award winning Re-recording mixer, Frank Morrone, who is an executive officer of the Cinema Audio Society and former president of MPSE expands, “Speaking with the students was great. I feel it’s important to give them a glimpse of what to expect once they are in a working environment and to help them to navigate those waters. We are all striving to give them the best advice possible to achieve success.”
The event offered an efficient and fun way to meet new people and share the joy of our crafts. Weiser summarizes, “EIPMA is proud of the support of the CAS, and we strive to make sure that CAS and all of our member organizations will be proud of the progress we are making with events like this one.”