Partnerships with VME Vamp Up Opportunities for Veterans
This year has been a non-stop growth spurt for the 501(c)3 non-profit, Veterans in Media & Entertainment. There are a ton of exciting developments in the works thanks to some very interested parties who want to work with VME. All these new developments couldn’t have come at a better time for the organization’s new management, we’ve been working very hard to stand up new programs for our members, so we’re thrilled to work with veteran-friendly Hollywood.
It seems Hollywood needs us, too. The demand for veterans in entertainment jobs is rapidly growing, and so is our membership. VME has vets coming in from all aspects of the industry to fill jobs, from sound engineers, grips and editors, to writers, directors and content creators, to distribution and production legal, and more!
In just a few short months, VME put boots on the ground and did some major outreach. As a result, we sat down with about a dozen companies, organizations, major studios, publication companies, and industry executives to plant seeds for veteran initiatives, programs and press. The receptiveness of these initiatives is proof that 2015 is one of the most pivotal times for VME, with no signs of slowing down.
In case you’re not excited yet, here’s a short summary of what's been going on.
Easter Seals with The Dixon Center continues to create exclusive opportunities for VME members to work on A-list productions, and by supporting content creators by having them involved in their national PSAs. Check out the latest PSA, "What to Wear", directed by VME member Jim Fabio and starring Rob Riggle!
The Society of Camera Operators just hosted the first VME workshop of its kind: Production Assistant 101. The 2-day intensive course was held on the Sony lot and even had Sony executives join us for a meet and greet at the end of the class. Now, those VME members in attendance are on everyone’s radar.
The REDucation course is being offered to VME members for the third year in a row! Select members will attend an intensive 2-day training course working with RED cameras.
Lionsgate and Grindstone Entertainment recently held one of VFT’s first event of our Roundtable Series. Select VME directors attended an exclusive Q&A and pitch mentorship with Grindstone executives. And because they’re so great, they’ve agreed to host a full-on pitch-fest for a small group of VME members.
Hollywood CPR is putting a group of VME members through their accredited certificate program. Graduates from their program end up in one of the unions - Local 600, 695, 700, 705, 728, 729, 800 and more. Select, entry level VME members will go in knowing little-to-nothing, and come out members of one of these unions with over 600 hours under their belts, and training that was developed by the unions themselves!
We’re working with The Groundlings to offer workshops for our veterans. Groundlings is a legendary Los Angeles improv company that launched the careers of such performers as Phil Hartman, Jon Lovitz, Lisa Kudrow, and Edie McClurg. Who knows which VME member will be next on that list.
The Mission Continues has partnered with VME to provide their fellowship program for select members to work for VME! We’ve already got one fellow starting next month, and we're in the works of getting a second. The fellowship program is an incredible benefit for VME and the VME member. The veteran will work with us during VME's expansion while learning the ins and outs of the entertainment industry, and we’ll get some much-needed manpower!
We’re thrilled to share all the good news and will keep you posted as more developments unfurl. Until then, stay tuned on social media to see what our great members are up to. After all, VME is only making such a huge impact because of the incredibly talented veterans within it.