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Launching a career in television

Remember that no one will care more about your own career than you will. Don't rely on anyone else to get you to where you want to go. When opportunities come up, take them. Always say yes

You might recognise his name from the rolling credits of hit Aussie shows like Bondi Rescue, Go back to where you came from or The Biggest Loser Australia but Joel Byrnes also has the lustrous title of TAFE NSW Graduate to his name.

We sat down with Joel to chat about studying Film and Television Production at The Northern Sydney Institute & how TAFE NSW has helped his career:

Why TAFE NSW?

TAFE NSW offered a hands-on approach, covering all the skills I needed to launch a career in TV. It was a practical alternative, with a great learning environment.

The best thing about studying at TAFE NSW

We jumped straight in and got our hands dirty, backing up theory with practice, experimenting with cameras and equipment. We had access to industry professionals who gave us advice and a firsthand account of what working in television would really be like. The TAFE NSW approach made learning more exciting.

Useful skills

I learnt how to adapt. Technology changes so fast these days, it would be pointless to learn specific skills that will be redundant in 18 months. TAFE NSW fostered a desire to learn and broaden my skill base so that I could continue to adapt and evolve throughout my career.

Expectations of TAFE NSW

I was blown away by the facilities and resources available to us at TAFE. I was able to learn such a variety of skills, from the old format editing on film, to modern non-linear editing on computers. We experimented with multi-camera live TV studio productions and single camera shoots. We learned the theory and practical applications of every discipline involved in making television and movies. It was amazing.

How did TAFE NSW launch your career?

It can be hard to get your foot in the door of the television industry, but once you are ‘in', opportunities open up for you. Our teachers were always looking for opportunities for students to establish career in TV for those willing to go after them.

Where are you now?

I'm currently a freelance editor working in television production. I've worked on shows for each of the free-to-air networks and Foxtel.

What do you love most about your job?

I mostly work on observational documentaries so I love that I get to be creative. I learn something new on every production I work on and still play around with new technology. My job fits my personality perfectly.

Advice for someone starting out

Remember that no one will care more about your career than you will. Don't rely on anyone else to get you to where you want to go. When opportunities come up, take them. Always say yes.

Do you want to work in film or television? Check out our Media and Entertainment careers area