Kimberly Lopez is a Community Engagement and Education intern from the Center for Arts Education. A senior in high school, she is passionate about photography and film and shares her experience interning with POV. The two photos featured here, from her portfolio, were inspired by The Light in Her Eyes and The City Dark.
As a developing high school artist, my photography teacher encouraged me to apply to the Career Development Program from the Center for Arts Education because he knew I would gain a great experience as an intern. The Center for Arts Education is an organization focused on ensuring all public school students (from K-12) are given quality arts education and the Career Development Program gives the opportunity for young artists to work in art-affiliated firms. When I was accepted into the C.D.P at the Center for Arts Education, I was sent to group meetings called “Boot Camp.” “Boot Camp” helped prepare young inspiring artists like me to become an intern in art-affiliated firms. My boss asked me what kind of art I was planning to pursue and I gladly said film and photography. I’ve always been interested in film and photography because they lead me to become aware of the world outside of my own.
The day of my interview I was very nervous, like any other person, and as I entered the office of POV, a television series that broadcasts independent non-fiction films, I was awestruck by all the awards they have won. All the awards lit up like light bulbs and made me more nervous than I was before. As soon as I met Aubrey Gallegos, my future mentor in the Community Engagement and Education department, I settled down. The interview was a breeze and I was able to learn more about POV. Although I went to other interviews, I was most interested in POV because I admired their enthusiasm to connect people through films.
Most of the films that POV broadcasts highlight the small moments within the gritty reality most people live. Whether I watched short films or full-length documentaries, I always gained a new outlook and understanding of the world. One of my favorite documentaries previous to interning with POV was Following Sean (POV 2007) and while being shown around the office, I saw a poster of the film. My mentor informed me that they aired the film in one of their past seasons. I had gained so much insight from watching Following Sean, seeing a perspective of the sixties I never had before. I knew that if I were to get the intern position in Community Engagement and Education, I would be affecting numerous people.
When I received a call back, I was thrilled. My first day of work was awesome. I got a chance to watch an adorable film called Racing Dreams and was able to voice my opinion of it. My mentor Aubrey told me my job would be to watch documentaries and reach out to youth organizations that would share interest in the film. My favorite film I worked on was The Light in Her Eyes. After watching the film, I gained a greater understanding of women within the Islamic religion. The following day during my photography class, I asked my friend Ndmoube about her Islamic faith. A couple of days later my former photography teacher and Ndmoube had a very interesting debate about the Islamic religion and rules. I decided to cut into the conversation and was able to see Ndmoube’s point of view, and then branched out into a conversation with Ndmoube about the film. I showed her the trailer of The Light in Her Eyes and she was very captivated by it. I then asked her if she thought she could screen the film in her youth organizations and she agreed to talk to her coordinator about the film. I never thought I would take my work outside of work but POV made me very passionate about speaking to people about real topics.
POV reminded me that art influences and affects the world in many ways. Including many films, art has stories to tell. Art gives people an opportunity to reflect and grow. To me art has become a representation of reality. Now when I take a picture I try to look for a deeper meaning and a way to connect with the genuine story behind it.
POV accepts applicants for internships year round in many departments: Community Engagement & Education, Development, Digital and Programming & Production. To find out more and to apply for a POV Internship, visit pov.org/internships.