Internship Spotlight

Zeina Abouelmakarem

Intern at Studio Ochenta

Internships are a great opportunity to apply what you learn in the classroom to life in the “real world…” or the online world of working remotely! Here, Global Communications student Zeina Abouelmakarem shares her experience working as an assistant producer at the Paris-based podcast Studio Ochenta. Studio Ochenta was founded by AUP alum and lecturer Lory Martinez, who Abouelmakarem met while taking Martinez’s class From Broadcast to Podcast in Fall 2020. 


Tell us a little bit about your background? 

I am Egyptian, born and raised in Cairo. I moved to Paris in 2016 and completed my A-Levels at The British School of Paris, and then joined AUP in 2018. 

Which company/organization are you currently interning with?  

I am currently interning at Studio Ochenta. 

Where is your internship taking place?  

Paris, France, though the internship is 100% remote. 

What is your job title?  

Assistant Producer 

What types of responsibilities and/or tasks do you have in your internship? What's a typical day for you like? 

My job at Studio Ochenta includes many responsibilities such as copyrighting, content creating, translating, voice work assistance, sound design assistance, coordination, ideation for specific markets, editing assistance, and music assistance. 

Prior to the start of the internship we organized 3 hours a day to dedicate to the internship, depending on when my classes are.  I usually wake up attend some classes, do my internship tasks (hours are flexible so I can always change the time if it's more convenient). Sometimes the 3 hours are before my classes, so it's a not a fixed time of the day. I communicate with my team via email and Slack, they are super friendly and very supportive ad so I found it very easy to communicate with them. 

What are the biggest challenges and successes you’ve experienced during your internship? 

I would say the biggest challenge is definitely balancing my university work, and internship work. Sometimes I need more time to finish off something which can get very tricky time-wise. As for the successes, I am generally feeling great about the work and ideas I contribute every day, especially that I am mainly using Arabic (my first language) for much of the work, it makes me feel unique and proud to be able to get creative with it and spread it amongst cultures through the podcasts we produce at Studio Ochenta.  


What language(s) are you speaking/using in your internship? 

Mainly English because my team comes from many different parts of the world where they mostly speak Spanish, so English is best in terms of communications between us. For example, I personally use a lot of Arabic to create content and translate episodes, and even give references. Sometimes we use some French as well. 

Tells us about your future goals/aspirations. Is this internship relevant? Do you think it will help you along the way?  

I am enjoying my time at Studio Ochenta and I hope that my passion for podcast production will grow even more as I continue to work with them. My future goal is to get a Master’s degree in a course that doesn't veer dramatically from Communications because I am really enjoying it. Meanwhile, I hope to continue working in the podcast industry. 

Anything else to share?  

I met my employer (Lory Martinez) at AUP, she taught me a course about podcasts that I joined accidentally and ended up liking lot. Eventually she offered me an internship position at her company which I was grateful for. Professor Martinez is very welcoming and supportive, and I wanted to say that it's these opportunities that matter the most, because we never know where each opportunity will lead us to. So, thank you AUP for providing us a space to build our career and explore our interests.