Applying Wartburg’s journalism and communication education in the industry

Lauren Ulveling and the other 99 students who completed the Academy Gold Rising Internship Program pose on a stage.
Lauren Ulveling was one of 99 students to complete the Academy Gold Rising Internship Program through the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.


For 13 weeks this summer, Lauren Ulveling ’24 left her Iowa hometown for Los Angeles, Calif., where she served as a publicity intern at Shout! Studios, a media company specializing in film and TV distribution, development, and production. The opportunity was part of the Academy Gold Rising Internship program.

“I was always thrown into different summer programs growing up. The only one that ever stuck was theater. I continued my involvement through high school and discovered a love of storytelling through the arts and entertainment section of our newspaper. I fell in love with storytelling in this new medium,” said Ulveling.

She decided to pursue journalism and communication to grow her love of storytelling. For her, Wartburg’s program is the best of both worlds, getting hands-on experience in her film courses and learning the ways of storytelling through journalism.

“The Academy Gold program is the talent development wing of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. They have two tracks for applicants, the first being the Academy Gold Rising’s internship track and the second the production track,” explained Ulveling.

Lauren Ulveling holds an Oscar while standing next to a life size Oscar statue.

Under the Academy Gold internship track, she was able to work with Shout! Studios in the publicity office. During this time she attended several industry panels, networking events, and industry professional training events.

“Picking one part as my favorite is very difficult,” said Ulveling “Having people in the industry that you have been in awe over sitting 30 feet in front of you saying they’re excited for you to join them in this industry someday was just crazy.”

Industry professionals, like Brittney Snow and Micheal Abels, spoke to the group weekly.

“I am still trying to walk a fine line when I talk about this experience because I don’t want to brag about it,” said Ulveling “but I am still trying to wrap my head around because I would start to get comfortable and then realize just how wild it really was.”

The experience was even more unbelievable given the competitive nature of the program. Despite not growing up alongside industry professionals, Ulveling was one of only 99 individuals selected for the experience from the more than 7,400 applicants. She credits so much of her experience at Wartburg College for preparing her to take on such a task.

In addition to her classwork, Ulveling has served as president of Knight Vision Films, social media manager for Wartburg Players, director of the Players 2023 spring play “Little Women,” and videographer for Knight Vision News. She also acknowledged that the Wartburg student employment confidentiality agreement greatly prepared her to work with sensitive information in the field.

“Before even accepting this internship I spent a lot of time with Professor Ronald Johnson to figure out if this was the best fit. Without his support, I don’t think I would have been able to move out to L.A. on my own for the summer or even have the opportunity to because of the experience that he has helped me to gain in my time at Wartburg,” said Ulveling.