The NBCUniversal Page Program is a one-year rotational learning and development program that provides participants with incredible experience in—and exposure to—the media and entertainment industry. Over the past two years, four Newhouse School alumni have become pages, working at the iconic 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City. Below, the pages share their stories.
By Griffin Uribe Brown
“Every day is a dream,” says Katie Hopsicker G‘22, an alumna of Newhouse’s Goldring arts journalism and communications graduate program. She works as a NBCUniversal page on late-night TV shows like “Saturday Night Live” and “Late Night with Seth Meyers.”
Having danced and choreographed all her life, Hopsicker always wanted a career in the arts. During summers in between attending Southern Methodist University, she interned for the local newspaper at home in Albany, New York. This combination of arts and journalism led her to “one of the best years of my life” at Newhouse.
Fresh from her undergraduate experience, she says she walked into her graduate year with a “nothing to lose, and everything to gain” approach. One course, in particular, left an impression: an entrepreneurship class with Sean Branagan, the director of the Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship, that says she “completely changed my life.”
From there, she started Salt City Arts Review, an online publication that provided robust arts coverage of the Syracuse area. “That’s when I really knew that I had a place in the arts,” she says.
Hopsicker, who started as a page in the fall 2022, now lives in a studio apartment in the city and rotates through fast-paced stints that last three-four months in different roles on various productions.
Her first rotation was on the employer branding team where she helped with graphic design and social media for the talent acquisition team. Now she’s on the audience team for “Late Night with Seth Meyers” and the talent team for “SNL,” assisting with VIPs and guests. Hopsicker takes her responsibilities with an open mind, seeing each rotation as a new opportunity to learn.
“Be outgoing and willing to try new things, willing to say yes to anything that comes up,” she says. “You never know what will take you to your dream.”
Griffin Uribe Brown is a first-year student in the magazine, news and digital journalism program at the Newhouse School.
By Samantha Rodino
Katelin Benson ‘21 is not only a Newhouse School alumna, but a Page Program alumna, having graduated in February 2023.
During the fall of her senior year, Benson, who majored in graphic design at Newhouse and marketing at the Whitman School of Management, interned at NBCUniversal through Newhouse NYC. While she had heard of the Page Program, it was Newhouse’s Career Development Center (CDC) that gave her more insight into the opportunity.
Benson spent her junior and senior years working as a graphic designer and helping with social media for the CDC. “I attribute a lot of my past couple of years to the Career Development Center,” Benson says. Working for the center—which aids students in finding jobs and internships—came in handy as Benson learned how to search for specific positions and find connections with Syracuse University and Page Program alumni.
Benson started the program virtually in June 2021 due to COVID-19. By October, she was in the studio supporting live, audience-filled shows like “Saturday Night Live” and the “Today” show.
“I think my favorite part was the fact you could get into different areas that you weren’t initially interested in or had experience in,” she explains.
“Starting in the Page Program was super helpful to get that experience, not only in the entertainment industry but at a company such as NBCUniversal because they have so many different segments and it’s so well-known.”
Benson emphasizes how important her Newhouse education was when taking on different roles. “I think [the program] was surprised by a lot of the design background I had and a lot of that was because of the studying and all the classes that I took at Newhouse for my design major,” Benson says.
Benson continues to live her dream; she was recently hired as a program scheduling coordinator at NBCUniversal for their USA/SYFY networks.
Samantha Rodino is a first-year student in the television, radio and film program at the Newhouse School.
By Max Gifford
From reporting for NBCUniversal New York’s Rockefeller Center tree lighting pre-show, to working “Saturday Night Live” with Pedro Pascal and Coldplay, Ryan Baker ’22 has had many adventures as a member of the NBCUniversal Page Program.
Baker, who majored in broadcast and digital journalism and marketing management in the Whitman School of Management, began the one-year long rotational program shortly after his graduating from the Newhouse School in May 2022. His rotations have included doing content operations and integration work for NBCUniversal, and reporting for WNBC Digital News.
“Getting to work at a media company to try the business side of things and getting to try the broadcast side of things has been really, really cool,” he says. “The corporate side of television was something I had previously taken for granted.”
Currently, Baker is on his third rotation, where he helps with production at CNBC and works on set for the shows “Fast Money” and “Halftime Report.”
In his time at Syracuse University, Baker was a busy member of campus organizations including CitrusTV, WJPZ Radio and the Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity. For students interested in the Page Program he encourages them to get involved outside of the classroom.
“Those [media organizations] are very unique to Syracuse,” he says. “Don’t be afraid to talk about all the things that you’ve accomplished at [Syracuse] when you’re applying for a program like this.”
When Baker finishes at CNBC, he will enter into his “graduation period” where he will apply for jobs and continue working on late-night shows including “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” and “SNL.”
These experiences, combined with his his Newhouse education have primed him for a successful career in media.
“Newhouse and Syracuse in general does such a great job preparing you for a career in the media field so you have the skills graduating from the university to get pretty much any job that you want.”
Max Gifford is a first-year student in the broadcast and digital journalism program at the Newhouse School.
By Nico Horning
Newhouse alumna Alyssa Horwitz ‘22 has also been able to work as a page on “SNL” as part of the highly coveted NBCUniversal Page Program.
“I get to work at “SNL” every weekend. And it’s so exciting to be there, you feel like you’re part of something bigger than yourself,” Horwitz says. “New York is always moving. It’s loud. It’s just fun. I think it’s a great place to go after college.”
A native of Randolph, New Jersey, Horwitz graduated from Newhouse with a degree in advertising, double majoring in policy studies at the Maxwell School. Horwitz credits Newhouse with helping her succeed in the Page Program and as she searches for future employment.
“My Newhouse education is helping me now because in advertising we did a lot of presentations,” she says. “So much of our coursework was doing research projects, and then being able to present them and being able to pitch them to our professors and our peers.”
“You don’t realize how often you have to do that in a less formal setting, but still in the workforce,” she adds, whether it’s pitching an idea or promoting your strengths and qualifications in a job interview.
Horwitz is now used to doing five or six interviews in the span of one week and realizes “you only have a short amount of time to really sell it.”
One of Horwitz’ favorite parts of her Page experience is working with Chris Hayes, host of the Emmy Award-winning MSNBC news and opinion program “All In With Chris Hayes.” She takes part in production meetings with Hayes and the staff go over the show rundown and review discussion topics.
“So, it’s definitely a very lucky experience that I get to do that every day,” she says.
There is no one way to become a page, Horwitz says.
“Whatever it is that makes you uniquely yourself, really emphasize that in your cover letters and your interview,” she says. “Lean into that personality whether it’s for the Page Program or for any type of creative entertainment field job or something that you’d be interested in after Newhouse.
“I think what makes you, yourself, is what will help you find the job that you’re meant to be in.”
Nico Horning is a first-year student in the broadcast and digital journalism program at the Newhouse School.