Course Overview

In the city where new technologies create magic, and dreams can come true, students learn how the rapidly changing media ecosystem works. This class will dispel the myths that Hollywood is an above-the-line private club for the power elite. It will open student’s eyes to the vast career opportunities available in an industry that’s being retooled–thanks to seismic shifts in technology that have led to streaming distribution, changing viewing habits, big data, social media and globalization. Students will learn how the new rules of the game are impacting creative outputs and changing the business bottom line. And students will be armed with practical tools to meet new challenges facing the industry going forward related to:

  • Entertainment and News
  • Marketing and Advertising
  • Music and Sports

There will be in class learning as well as field trips to better familiarize students with the Los Angeles media landscape.  Students will also be given an overview of the areas of study at the Newhouse School and will meet with alumni who will share their experiences.

All students who successfully complete the course will receive a Certificate of Completion and have the opportunity to request a Syracuse University noncredit transcript.

Learning Objectives

  • Explain how the communications industry is evolving in the OTT era and how the changes are impacting the entertainment industry including consumers, studios, talent agencies, advertisers, marketers, writers, editors and producers.
  • Understand how Content is King and where story ideas come from. They will learn how the industry is meeting new business challenges with new types of digital content, more direct interaction with consumers, the use of more data and groundbreaking new technologies.
  • Understand how important it is to know your audience and be able to describe how viewers are consuming media and who is watching what, when, where and how.
  • Create different kinds of media projects; Scripted programming pitches, unscripted programming pitches, news stories, marketing campaigns.
  • Feel more confident speaking in front of guest speakers and an audience of their peers.

“…the Syracuse University Pre-College Program was by far one of the greatest experiences of my life. I got a taste of what it was like to be a real college student and I loved every minute of it.”

— Max C., Summer College Student 2022

Course Information

Course Prefix and Number: SCN 143

Format: On Location: Los Angeles, CA (commuter only) at Syracuse University’s Dick Clark Los Angeles Program

Eligibility: Students must be of rising high school junior or senior status – or a 2024 high school graduate. Students must be able to commute to and from the Los Angeles (North Hollywood, CA) location for class. 

Credit: Noncredit

Grading: Pass/Fail


  • Commuter, only: $995

Program rates are subject to change and will be approved by the board of trustees. Discounts and scholarships are also available.

Program Information

Summer College – On Location: Experience what college is really like in one of Syracuse University’s homes on the west or east coasts! 

Course Dates and Details

ProgramCourse DatesLocationClass Time (Pacific Time)Credit/NoncreditStatus
Summer College – On Location1-Week Session: Monday, July 15 – Friday, July 19, 2024Los Angeles (North Hollywood), CAMTWThF;
10 a.m. –
4 p.m.
Students will break for roughly half an hour for lunch. Class times subject to change.

Course Requirements


Students should budget for required textbooks and supplies. Students should have a laptop, and professional clothing for any field trips.

Typical Day

Tentative Schedule

The week will include meetings with alumni, former Newhouse students, and field trips.

Day 1:

  • Broadcast Television
  • Cable, Streamers
  • Feature Films
  • Scripted vs. Unscripted

Day 2:

  • Marketing
  • Advertising
  • Branding
  • Public Relations
  • Field Trip TBD

Day 3:

  • News and Sports

Day 4:

  • Music
  • Bandier program

Day 5:

  • All about Newhouse
  • Admissions
  • Application tips
  • Former students visit
  • Field trip to the Motion Picture Academy Library + Lunch

Faculty Bios

Robin Howard

Robin Forman Howard has been the director of Syracuse University’s Los Angeles semester program from 2013 to 2022. She is currently the director of Newhouse LA and manages all educational programs in Los Angeles for the Newhouse School. She originally joined the Newhouse LA team in 2009 as an adjunct professor.

Robin worked in almost every field of feature film and television production in her over 30-year career in the entertainment industry and brings that depth of knowledge to the Newhouse LA program every day. 

Beginning her entertainment career in the field of post-production, Robin was the post-production supervisor on Sydney Pollack’s “Out of Africa.” She worked her way up to line producing “Crisscross” starring Goldie Hawn and “Fearless” starring Jeff Bridges.  She produced HBO’s “The Cherokee Kid” starring Sinbad, NBC’s “Because Mommy Works” starring Anne Archer and “Cloned” starring Elizabeth Perkins.

Robin ran the day-to-day operations of several multi-million dollar production companies. She was executive vice president for Sydney Pollack’s Mirage Productions and then for Mark Rosenberg and Paula Weinstein’s Spring Creek Productions. 

Culminating her entertainment career as President of Spring Creek Television, she developed and served as executive producer on “Iron Jawed Angels” for HBO. This $25 million film about the women’s suffrage movement in America, starring Hilary Swank and Angelica Huston, had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for 5 Emmys, 3 Golden Globes and the prestigious Humanitas award. It was given special recognition by the United States Women’s Congressional Caucus, screened in the Library of Congress and is routinely screened in women’s studies programs in colleges and universities throughout the nation.

Robin was raised in Brooklyn, New York and received a BA in television/radio from Brooklyn College and a master’s degree from Syracuse University where she attended the Newhouse School on a teaching fellowship.

Robin is a member of the Producers Guild of America and the Television Academy.