Hannah Forde

English BA

Why did you decide to undertake a professional placement year?

I undertook a professional placement year because I am career driven and wished to equip myself with the work experience a year in industry would give me.

Why did you decide to apply to Warner Bros?

Firstly, I decided to apply to Warner Bros. because I wish to pursue a publicity and events career in the entertainment industry.

Secondly, Warner Bros. believe their interns to be an integral part of the company – I felt this when I was applying as the company had a dedicated website for their interns and apprentices, and a specifically designed application process. This focus on early careers stood out against other companies I had applied to.

Do you have any top tips for succeeding in the application process?

Aim high and don’t settle for less than a placement you want, be active but also patient when applying, attend the University’s lectures and workshops all about the application process and seek advice from someone who has been an intern at that company.

What kind of duties and responsibilities did you have in your placement role?

I had daily administrative duties such as collating media coverage, booking and managing films screenings, purchase orders, updating the mailing list etc. I also worked across film events like premieres, influencer screenings, press days, publicity activations and the BAFTA Awards 2019.

What did you expect from a placement before you started and what actually happened?

I expected to be put out of my comfort zone and challenged professionally. This was the case, but I was also thoroughly supported by my colleagues along the way and therefore I learned quickly. I expected to have an essential role within the department and was pleasantly surprised to find my opinion and ideas to be as considered as they were, despite my lack of experience in the industry.

What was your biggest achievement during your placement?

I received three further work experiences following my placement; this was a massive compliment and reassured me that the work I had done throughout my year had impressed my managers.

What was the biggest challenge you faced on your placement?

My workload increased during a period of time in which, coincidentally, our Publicity Coordinator and our Events Manager left the company. Though this was a challenge, I was always supported by my line manager and I developed my organisational, and time management skills substantially in this time.

Where there any key projects that you worked on during the placement year? If so, what did they involve and what was the outcome?

BAFTA 2019: Assisting with guiding nominees through press and photography lines and into the Royal Albert Hall. Organising seating, ticketing and dinner plans for nominees and additional Warner Bros. guests.

The outcome from this was that my confidence in myself grew as I was trusted to work on, and at, such an important event.

What new skills did you learn on placement?

Time management; learning not to procrastinate, confidence within the professional environment and among superiors, firmer belief in what I am able to achieve.

How will doing a placement benefit you in your final year/ the future?

Without a placement, it would have been possible to enter the arena I wish to pursue a career in - however, as it is so competitive, I feel I will have an advantage from other applicants having completed a year in industry. This experience will also expedite the initial learning period that I would have otherwise encountered in my first professional job post-graduation.

How do you feel the organisation has benefitted from employing a placement student?

I feel the organisation benefits from employing placement students because it enables the departments, and therefore the company, to run more efficiently.