Helena Fistel

Credentials: Showtime Networks

Position title: Associate Writer/Producer/Editor

Majors: Journalism & Communication Arts (Radio, TV, Film)

Certificate: Digital Studies

Graduation Date: May 2016


What does a typical day in the office look like for you?

There’s a lot of variety! I conceptualize ideas for Showtime marketing campaigns for their Showtime Original Hit Series, like Shameless, Billions, Homeland, The Affair, and Ray Donovan, along with theatricals, documentaries, and sports. I produce and edit promos and campaigns from start to finish, which includes script writing, choosing content, editing, graphics packaging, and sound design. I also work closely with partners like Amazon and Hulu for content that runs specifically on their platforms. In addition to all that, I’ll also act as an Assistant Director on digital campaign shoots for Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat ads for both Shameless and Ray Donovan when needed.

How did you end up at Showtime?

I always knew I wanted to work in television. After completing several internships in New York and working at Viacom, I made a lot of connections in the industry. I started at Showtime as a Coordinator and quickly was promoted to an Associate Producer role after only working here for eight months. I love the behind-the-camera aspect of television and being on set and I couldn’t have pictured a better path to get to where I am today.

How has Digital Studies influenced your career path?

The study of audiences and consumers is something I will always find valuable in my work. It’s also been really helpful recently since our main targets for ads are social media platforms. People are consuming television by streaming on their devices and learning about the rise of these platforms through my certificate courses has been very helpful.

Did you have a favorite Digital Studies class?

I loved Com Arts 346: Critical Internet Studies with Professor Jeremy Morris. Learning about how the internet came to be and all the trends from AOL to Facebook was something I found so interesting and still do today. Also learning about memes, viral videos, and all the other things that are so relevant to our day-to-day lives.

Do you have any advice for current students?

Being able to take classes and focus on what you really love, especially if you know what you want to do or be, is one of the most liberating feelings. So take all the classes possible and learn as much as you can about what you love while at the UW. And if you don’t know what you want to do, don’t sweat it! The possibilities are endless and you can try out so many different things until you find the perfect fit. Also, enjoy the campus and the city and everything it has to offer – there is truly nowhere else in the world like Madison.