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Experiential Learning

Ideas to Action

From client projects to industry events, practical experience is a cornerstone of your Heinz College education.

Effective leaders, managers, and creators must know how to deliver on their ideas in a measurable way, clearly communicate with all stakeholders, and understand how their roles and decisions fit into the broader landscape of the field. To achieve these competencies, there is no substitute for meaningful hands-on learning experiences that bridge learned theories and best practices.


  • Experience two unique and exciting cultural centers, Pittsburgh and Los Angeles.
  • Have access to exclusive industry events, speakers, and networking opportunities.
  • Move beyond the classroom and gain tangible skills through work opportunities both on- and off-campus, including your second-year practicum internships in the entertainment industry.
  • Solve a real-world problem for an entertainment industry client in your team-based Capstone Project.
  • Make meaningful connections through internships and apprenticeships, many of which lead to full-time job offers.
  • Apply your newly earned knowledge from class to immersive activities, workshops, events, and student clubs.

Not only do these opportunities crystallize concepts and strategies learned in coursework, they add highly marketable industry experience to your résumé prior to graduation.


Heinz College MEIM students complete a team-based project, working in close collaboration with a real-world entertainment client. These projects fulfill an actual business or operational need for our partners, giving students an opportunity to have a measurable impact while still in school.

Recent MEIM Capstone clients include:

  • Adult Swim
  • Disney/ABC
  • NBCUniversal Television
  • Paramount
  • Playstation
  • Bally Sports Networks
  • Sony Studios
  • The Les Paul Foundation
  • XRM Media
  • Warner Bros.
  • John Wells Productions
  • Sundance Film Festival
  • Omelet/Cheat Code
  • Ayzenberg Group
  • Toronto International Film Festival
  • Village Roadshow Entertainment

Students are required to complete multiple internships in the entertainment industry throughout the course of the MEIM program; these include a summer internship between the first and second years, and practicum internship(s) completed alongside coursework during the second year.

During the entire second year, you will work 30+ hours per week (or a minimum of 300 hours during each semester) alongside a full-time load of courses. This constitutes a total immersion in the entertainment industry, providing you with a critical platform for showcasing your knowledge and skills while building your professional network.

These opportunities add up to over 1000 hours of practical work in the industry prior to graduation. No other program delivers that depth of experience.

My Internship Story: Erin

Erin Coughenour interned at RCA and Ultra Records during her time in the MEIM program.

Internships: An Insider's Perspective

Hear from second-year MEIM students as they describe where they are interning.

Recent Internships

Film Festivals

MEIM cohorts travel to major film festivals as a group, to experience that aspect of the industry first-hand. MEIM alumni have a growing presence on the festival circuit, whether as content producers or presenters/panelists. MEIM alumni regularly organize special events for current students as well. In recent years, MEIM alumni and students have even had work shown at festivals around the world. 


SXSW is an unforgettable experience! The festival highlights music, film, TV, video games, digital media, books, politics, and much more. Hear about what happened behind the scenes at SXSW 2022...

Networking, Industry Trips, and Special Presentations

Brooklyn Bridge at Sunset

The MEIM Program organizes a number of unique opportunities for networking with and gaining insight from top industry professionals. These opportunities include speakers, "industry night" seminars, presentations, and Network New York, which has become a centerpiece of the program's first year.

Work directly with Faculty

Our faculty are more than instructors. They are innovators and mentors who work to solve major problems facing the entertainment industry. Most importantly, our faculty are uncommonly accessible and include students in their groundbreaking work.

As a Heinz College student, you have many opportunities to enrich your grad school experience by working closely with world-renowned researchers and industry practitioners.

Many classes at Heinz College focus on team-based experiential projects, advised by a faculty expert, and that's especially the case in the MEIM program. These projects aim to present real entertainment management issues and provide a practical edge. Just a few of the project courses include:

  • Navigating the Practical Realities of the Entertainment Industry  group projects present about agencies, management firms, entertainment lawyers, and PR firms
  • TV Economics – group projects revolve around the negotiation, development, and production of scripted series based on IP
  • Live Music and Revenue Streams – groups design a concert tour which includes logistics, cities, dates, and support
  • TV Marketing – groups design and lunch a new marketing campaign for a current television show


U.S. Citizens enrolled in the MEIM program can work part-time for organizations in the Pittsburgh region, and work for public and non-profit firms is often eligible for Federal Community Service Work Study. 

See the MEIM Student Finances page for more information about work study and fellowship opportunities.


Many Heinz College students complement their education with involvement in immersive student activities and clubs. In some cases these activities are purely recreational or centered on community-building, but in many others they can be direct extensions of, or supplements to, coursework. 

One activity that many MEIM students are drawn to is the Carnegie Mellon International Film Festival. While the festival is based on the CMU campus, its mission is to engage the Pittsburgh community with programming that promotes cultural exchange and expression, and through film, illumniates the local and global ethnic communities which seldom have opportunities to celebrate their artwork and culture on a public scale. The Film Festival prides itself in being the only international film festival in the world organized and run by university students from the numerous educational institutions across Pittsburgh, such as CMU and the University of Pittsburgh.Most student volunteer their time for the festival but there are also a few paid positions.