Interns in Seacrest Studio Spark Joy for Patients

In December of 2020, Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children opened the first and only Seacrest Studio in the state of Florida. Brought to the hospital by the Ryan Seacrest Foundation in partnership with the Orlando Health Foundation, the studio has been a marvelous addition to the Child Life Program at Orlando Health Arnold Palmer.

Over the past two and a half years, the studio has brought an excitement and energy to our hospital and its patients like never before. Filled with all the equipment a radio or TV studio may have, our Seacrest Studio not only entertains patients through a closed circuit broadcast to patient rooms, but also gives them an opportunity to get creative by starring in a show, recording their own music or interviewing a celebrity.

This initiative has brought many opportunities for both patients and team members to become involved in digital programming and learn new skills. Education is an important aspect of the studio, with much of the programming centered around learning. In the Fall of 2022, the team welcomed its first class of interns. An exciting addition, the intern program allows college students to learn from all the studio has to offer while enhancing its interactivity with patients.

The inaugural ten interns, from the University of Central Florida and Rollins College, spent 20 hours per week throughout the semester in the studio. Liz Sivco, Studio Production Manager, oversees the program. A former high school TV production teacher with a background in production, Liz joined the studio team in March of 2022 with a focus on starting the intern program.

 “It’s been a wonderful thing to be able to work with these young students,” Liz says. “Our studio is here to help patients, but it is great to see how its equipment can provide other experiences and the ability for these students to grow.”

The interns have an assortment of backgrounds and skills ranging from gaming to salsa dancing to animation. While the intern pool featured a variety of students with different majors, many had experience with digital media and communications that drew them to the internship.

The program provides a unique learning experience for students, many of whom are very new to the production equipment the studio uses. “At first it can be daunting, seeing all these lights, buttons and faders. We break it down and teach them, and by the end of the semester they’re impressed with how much they’ve learned,” says Liz.

During the semester, each intern is tasked with developing their own show for the studio broadcast to educate and inspire patients. The interns work as a team and create materials to promote their shows within the hospital. Each student brings their unique skill set to the team and provides innovative and creative ways to enhance programming.

Having these students be a part of the studio team each semester helps to keep the programming fresh and exciting for patients. Whether passing out the prizes for weekly Bingo or helping a patient star in a broadcast, the interns help bring joy and fun to the patients of Orlando Health Arnold Palmer.

Seacrest Studio interns smiling

“My time as an intern has been one of the best experiences I have ever had. Not only did I meet incredible people and learn so much about radio and television production, but I was also lucky enough to see the impact that I had on these families as a result of being a part of the studio.” – Hallie (pictured in the middle), Spring 2023 Intern from the University of Central Florida.

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