By Hanna Moore
Movie fans and public relations students gathered in Room 213 Franklin Hall on Wednesday, Nov. 2 to hear from Emily Benedict, publicity manager for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Benedict said she originally wanted to go into journalism and was always interested in entertainment. When she started her career, she lived in London and worked as a copywriter and a researcher at an agency. Benedict also worked for the Academy of Country Music, where she mostly worked on social media.
When she made the transition to public relations, Benedict said it was a struggle because she was a 23-year-old intern working with younger student who had taken public relations classes.
When asked about her career at the Academy, Benedict said that every day is pretty amazing and that the first time working at the Oscars was really cool. Her favorite experience was being able to sit in on Adele's rehearsal for "Skyfall."
Benedict has had various other unique career opportunities, including working the press for the final Harry Potter movie premiere and escorting Barbara Streisand down the red carpet for a Clinton Foundation event.
So far, Benedict says that "Oscars So White" has been the biggest crisis she has faced in her career. She said that she went back to the principles she learned in her crisis communications class and used the RACE formula when helping the Academy respond to the controversy.
Benedict is currently working with the Academy on building the Academy Museum in Los Angeles, which she hopes will become a destination for movie fans around the world.
Her advice for students was to always network and stay in contact with people you meet at your internships and jobs. When applying for internships and careers, Benedict said to show you have passion for the position and include a spark of research or interest instead of sending a generic resume or cover letter.
Eventually, Benedict says she wants to move up in her career to supervise and lead strategy for a team.