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canned heat in my heels

Posted by Lauren C. on June 29, 2010

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Somehow, the first official week of summer has come to a close.  I have been home for just about a month now and, for some reason, spring feels as if it flew by and as if happened ages ago, all at the same time.  I blame that mostly on the fact that, for better or for worse, home and Hopkins are two very different worlds.  After finals ended at school, I spent my days waking up late, scrounging up food to cook from what was left over in my apartment, meeting friends to lay around aimlessly on the Beach or shop or explore, and then staying out late at night to squeeze every last drop of fun out of the semester.  It was bittersweet because many of my friends who were still hanging around campus were there to do a little thing called “graduate” this year, so each wonderful night was tinged with the reminder that we only had so many nights like it left.  I’ll admit I cried a little at graduation on May 27th – it was weird to think I would leave Baltimore that weekend and, when I returned, so many standard fixtures of Hopkins wouldn’t be there to greet me.

Me and Naomi, one of the many 2010 grads that I'm proud to call my friend!

And now I’m home.  Westmont is just how I left it last year – hot, humid, and as familiar as a town would be if you had lived there all your life.  As usual, I still wake up late most days of the week, but I think the pace is what’s most different.  It’s weird not to constantly go out to dinner, or live with a roommate, or stay up to greet the sunrise, or run around Baltimore accomplishing goals from our Hopkins Bucket Lists {frolicking in a fountain and hanging out on the rooftop of a campus building were two of our successes from the spring}.

Spending a day in the sun at Crystal Lake Pool

I do a lot of lazy things now: I watch copious amounts of The OC, lay around the pool all day, watch TV with family, prepare summer drinks and food to enjoy with friends while sitting around chatting, see lots of movies, etc.  It’s a great way to spend summer – but it sure is worlds away from life at Hopkins.  But even though I’m at home and enjoying some quiet time, that doesn’t mean I’m not doing my best to keep busy.

In fact, the thing taking up the majority of my time is an internship with the production department at the New Jersey Network, a public TV and radio network here in New Jersey.

The front of my building!

I work in Trenton, which is our state’s capital and only about an hour away from my house…which sure beats the 2.5+ hour commute I had to New York City last summer.  It’s also significantly cheaper to get to, which is a plus when you’re working for no pay.  Anyway, I’m doing all sorts of things as a production intern, but my tasks are focused around two major projects at the moment.   The first is a special on saving the Raritan River from pollution, toxic dumping, poor public health policies regarding its cleanup, and housing developments that prohibit public use of the river.  The second is a brand new series that focuses on local farms, farmers’ markets, wineries, and cheese culture in the state.

For the Raritan River project, we have over 100 tapes of footage shot and sitting on a rolly cart in the editing room {one of my favorite places in the whole office – it’s cooler in there and there are lots of buttons to press, which sounds silly but knowing what most of them actually do now is kind of exciting}.

One of our editing rooms! The newer HD editing room is right next door.

Each tape is at least a half hour long, but most likely even longer.  They include interviews with environmentalists, former state agency employees, chemists, public health specialists, and more.  And one of my jobs is to log each one – which basically means writing a full transcript of everything that is said and seen on tape, and at what time on the tape it can be found.  I learned to enjoy transcribing after getting to write up interviews at Girls’ Life, so I secretly love spending my office time this way.  But I get to do a lot more too!  I’ve done research for various projects and I’m learning about editing software too {they use Avid since they still edit from Beta tapes}, which is good because I could definitely be familiar with more than just Final Cut Pro.  I love being around all of the equipment too – the rooms used for editing, radio broadcast, television programming, and more are so fascinating to me and I could spend all day on the 4th floor watching the action go down.

As is typical for every single job I’ve ever had, I’m going to be working on the website to promote the fresh fruit/wine/cheese show as well.  I even get to sit in on production meetings, which cover all topics like the graphics used for the opening/previews/promos for shows, the shooting schedule, writing goals for each episode, and more.  And the most fun part is actually getting to be present and help out on shoots/interviews for this and other projects, whether in the field or in the studio.  The NJN News is filmed in my building every night too so I can sit in for that anytime I want as well.  It’s a great feeling to know I’m getting so much firsthand experience.

A photo from the Collingswood Farmers Market, which is a short walk away from my town and a featured market on the show.

But of course, you know me – I can’t be content only doing one thing at a time!  I’m fighting the temptation to be lazy all summer by spending my time writing three entries for the Hopkins CinemAddicts blog which will be posted in the fall, planning out a short film project I’ll be working on in September and October, having fun doing out-of-the-norm things with my friends, and figuring out the ways to be happiest my senior year {wardrobe and major hair revamps are in the works}.

I am also taking a fun trip at the end of July…but I’ll keep you in suspense on that one until I get back so I can post plenty of exciting photos!  After that, I’m aiming for my triumphant return to Baltimore to be around August 21 or so, just in time for Orientation week.  In the meantime, I am definitely following through on my goal for the season: check off every item on my Summer Bucket List in order to have 0 regrets come fall. {I mean, I even wrote an article about that for Girls’ Life Magazine – which you should all go out and buy to read it! Pretty please.}

Until I write again… wish you were here!

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Name: Lauren C.

Year: Alumni

Graduated: 2011

Major: Writing Seminars/Film & Media Studies

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