Dramatic Writing

The Rita and Burton Goldberg Department of Dramatic Writing is a highly focused academic and professional writing program committed to the rigorous training of writers for theatre, film and television. Because of changing economics, new technology, and cross-fertilization in the arts, we train emerging dramatists to become the artist of tomorrow, to work with flexibility, pace, and confidence in a variety of media in different dramatic forms and genres, with fluency in visual language and storytelling.

Our primary goal is to educate and train the writer through an integrated curriculum of courses: a stepped series of writing workshops, a set of challenging theoretical and analytical courses in text analysis, and a group of production and professional training courses that acquaint the emerging dramatist with the disciplines of those who collaborate with writers of drama. Training is firmly rooted in the liberal arts to develop the breadth of knowledge and critical thinking skills necessary for successful careers anywhere. Classes are conducted under the supervision of gifted teachers, who blend academic knowledge with their practical experience as seasoned industry professionals.

Professional Development
The Professional Colloquium course for seniors features guest speakers from the theatre, television, and film worlds who discuss the ins and outs of their industries and provide a practical look at the “business of show business.” Guests include agents, independent filmmakers, producers, story editors, literary managers, and representatives from the Dramatists Guild and the Writers Guild of America.

Internships create opportunities for hands-on experience vital to students’ educational and career goals. They offer the ability to apply theory from the classroom to the functions of work within the field, as well as assist in building skills, confidence, and relationships with industry professionals. All Dramatic Writing students must complete at least one internship in order to graduate, beginning in their junior year. Internship hours and credits vary, from 3-9 hours per week for up to 3 credits per semester. Past internships have been undertaken at Sirius Radio, MTV, Nickelodeon, Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, and National Geographic, among other sites.

Career Resources
The Tisch Office of Career Development strives to provide students and alumni with lifelong professional skills that help establish and sustain successful careers in the arts. TOCD’s services include: Tisch College Central, a searchable internship/job database; individualized career counseling (by appointment and weekly walk-ins); resume and cover letter reviews; career workshops and events; industry mentorship programs; access to electronic industry research tools; and a resource library stocked with trade publications and numerous career-related handouts. TOCD is located within Tisch’s Office of Student Affairs.

In conjunction with TOCD, the NYU Wasserman Center for Career Development provides career guidance and development services to NYU students and alumni. The Center hosts seminars, job fairs, and expos; schedules career counseling appointments; connects students with mentors and alumni; trains students in job interview skills and resume/cover letter writing; and compiles employer databases. The Center also maintains NYU CareerNet, an online database of both on- and off-campus job and internship listings. Students may use Wasserman’s resources to identify sustainable employment opportunities or explore additional career interests outside of the arts. 

Dramatic Writing alumni maintain a lifelong affiliation with the Tisch School of the Arts and have gone on to a wide variety of successful careers in the arts and beyond. Many have become playwrights, television writers, screenwriters, and directors. Others have parlayed their Tisch training into other careers focusing on communications and analysis, including law, finance, publishing, community organizing, and education. All are part of a vibrant network of mentors, artists, and entrepreneurs supported by the Tisch Office of Alumni Relations and the Tisch Office of Career Development. By creating interdisciplinary and cross-generational collaborations, these two offices help alumni maintain a connection to the past while growing into their future. Of particular note are two main alumni councils, Tisch East and Tisch West, whose activity is centered on metropolitan NYC and LA respectively. These Councils advance alumni collaborations like the 10x10 Alumni Industry Showcase, Dramatic Writing Script Critique and Networking Group, Web Series Lab and Showcase, and numerous industry Q&As.