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The Warner Bros. Reach Honorship Program — Should You Apply?

If you are interested in movies and the different aspects of filmmaking, working at a production studio would be a great way to experience how a movie comes together, from pre-production to filming, distribution, and finally, its release. 


Warner Bros., one of the largest film studios in the world, gives you the opportunity to do just that. If you are a graduating high school senior, the studio’s Reach Honorship gives you a deep understanding of the media and entertainment business! 


What is the Reach Honorship all about?

Warner Bros. Reach Honorship program is a unique internship-scholarship package open to graduating high school seniors living in or attending a high school in Burbank or Los Angeles County. A separate Hanna Barbera Reach Honorship in animation is open to students across the U.S. The Reach Honorship program is specifically aimed at students who come from backgrounds underrepresented at Warner Bros. studios. It offers selected candidates paid summer internships during college at the Warner Bros. studios in California and a $5,000 scholarship. If you want to learn more about how the entertainment industry works and see a future for yourself in finance, HR, communications, operations, content development, sound editing, and other roles, this could be a sound program for you!


Who is eligible for the program?

To apply, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a graduating high school senior in Burbank or Los Angeles County

  • Minimum CGPA of 3.0 upon graduation

Additionally, you must be able to demonstrate the following in your application:

  • An intention to attend an accredited college

  • Passion and interest in a career in media and entertainment

  • Strong verbal and written communication skills


Once accepted into the program, you must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.8 in college to receive the scholarship disbursements ($5,000, paid in $1,250 installments over four years).


What are some important dates?

Warner Bros. has paused the 2024 program. You can check the program website for information on the 2025 intake here.


Do I have to pay anything?

No! There is no fee to apply and the program gives you a $5,000 scholarship.


Is the program prestigious?

The Warner Bros. Honorship program is moderately prestigious and selective. It accepts between five and six students annually, though information on the acceptance rate is unavailable. The program has a minimum GPA requirement of 3.0 but is only open to high school students in Burbank and LA County, which limits the number of eligible applicants. 


On the other hand, the Hanna Barbera Reach Honorship for Animation is highly prestigious and selective. It accepts just one student annually and invites applications from across the U.S.


What can I do in the program?

The Reach Honorship offers students two tracks: 

  • Business: work in finance, marketing, communications, and other administrative and corporate roles in the industry

  • Production and Studio: work in production, post-production, or studio facilities roles in the industry


The program runs for four years during your college years, beginning the summer after you graduate and ending before you begin your senior year. The $5,000 scholarship is paid directly to your college in annual installments of $1,250, provided you maintain a minimum GPA of 2.8. 


Each summer, you can choose to work in any one of Warner Bros. 60+ departments, including marketing, publicity, social media, studio operations, media research, sales, and many more! You will be integrated into the team working with films and shows currently being produced by the studio. Each year, you will be paired with a different executive mentor and encouraged to learn more about their profession and network. 


Students previously accepted into the program have backgrounds in digital media, business, storytelling, film editing, direction, programming, and other related fields.   


Once you graduate from college, Warner Bros. can offer you a position at the company. Around 40% of Reach graduates have been hired by Warner Bros.    


Pros and cons of the program:

Pros: 

  1. You get to work at one of the largest film studios in the world Warner Bros. is an iconic brand in the film industry, behind some of the most well-known films and TV shows. Being associated with them will definitely add value to your CV and give you a unique opportunity to witness and be a part of bringing a movie to the big screen!

  2. You receive a stipend and a scholarship! During the summer, you participate in a paid internship at Warner Bros. studios in California. You also receive a $5,000 scholarship, paid directly to your college or university!

  3. You can choose from two tracks When applying to the program, you can opt for either the Business or Production track. With business, you can see the corporate and administrative side of making a movie while the Production track lets you work in studio facilities and gain hands-on experience in shooting a film.

  4. You can opt for a different department every year Choose between sales, marketing, studio operations, social media, and many other departments that play a role in producing a film! You can choose a different department every summer, giving you a well-rounded view of the film industry. 

  5. You get mentored by Warner Bros. executives Each summer internship, you are paired with a different executive who shows you the specifics of their job. You can use this experience to decide if a particular field interests you.

  6. You can network with industry professionals Use this opportunity to meet and connect not only with Warner Bros. employees but also other professionals within the film industry. You can even attend events and build relationships that can take your career further!

  7. You are more likely to be accepted if you come from an underrepresented community The Reach Honorship program encourages students from backgrounds underrepresented in Warner Bros. to apply. The alumni demographic is spread between women and minority communities.  

  8. You could join Warner Bros. as an employee! Warner Bros. offers impressive candidates the opportunity to interview to join the company once they graduate. The studio hires around 40% of Reach participants.


Cons:

  1. You can apply only if you live in Burbank or LA Count The program is only open to graduating high school students living in these two areas. However, the animation Honorship is open to students across the U.S.

  2. The program is not available in 2024 Warner Bros. has paused the program for this year, making current high school seniors (who intend to go to college in 2024) ineligible.

Our review — what do we think of the program?

The Warner Bros. Reach Honorship is a solid opportunity for interested students to learn more about filmmaking and production. The program offers a $5,000 scholarship and a paid internship for four summers. What’s more, you can even interview to join the studio once you graduate! You get mentored by Warner Bros. executives and can work in different departments, giving you a holistic view of film production. 


On the other hand, the program is open only to LA County and Burbank residents, which limits the number of participants. Nor is the program available in 2024, which makes many interested candidates ineligible to apply.


Bonus — the Lumiere Research Scholar Program

If you’d like to participate in a rigorous research program open to high schoolers, you may want to consider the Lumiere Research Scholar Program, a selective online high school program for students founded by researchers at Harvard and Oxford. Last year, we had over 4000 students apply for 500 spots in the program! You can find the application form here.


Also check out the Lumiere Research Inclusion Foundation, a non-profit research program for talented, low-income students. Last year, we had 150 students on full need-based financial aid!


Kieran Lobo is a freelance writer from India, who currently teaches English in Spain. 


Image Source: Warner Bros. logo


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