YCP Mass Communication grad works as production assistant on Netflix sets
Tyler Josbeno ’18 remembers running across a busy Brooklyn street with a surge of adrenaline. A walkie-talkie in hand, he was working as a production assistant on the set of She’s Gotta Have It, a Netflix series created by 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks, a production company of Spike Lee. “The job of a production assistant isn’t always glamorous,” he says, laughing. “I just knew I felt really fortunate to be there. Here I was, right out of college, and I was taking the first steps in a really exciting career.”
Josbeno’s job not only had him charging and delivering walkie-talkies to people on set, but he often ran for supplies, kept the public from wandering onto an open set, and stayed to pack up when production was finished. From that job, he went on to work a few commercials for Budweiser, spent a couple of days on set for NBC’s Manifest, and eventually landed on the set of HBO’s Bad Education. The work was busy, and he loved it.
A different path
Josbeno started at York College of Pennsylvania as a Mechanical Engineering major. He had studied math and science and even participated in robotics in high school. He loved to create and build, so it seemed like a good fit, he says. While he spent many hours studying, his free time was filled with making films with his friends. “I thought it was just a hobby,” he says. “But I kept coming back to it. As much as I wanted my heart to be in it, it just wasn’t. I was panicking. I asked myself, ‘Where am I happy?’”
That question led Josbeno to have a serious conversation with his parents about changing his career path. With the goal to be an editor, he switched his major to Mass Communication. Now, he says, his passions aligned with his plans. With a range of video projects and a Fox 43 internship on his résumé, he graduated York College ready to pursue his future.
Josbeno started applying for a range of production jobs with the backup plan of working in a grocery store until something came through. While he was proud of the work he’d done up until graduation, landing a gig with a big company was tough for someone right out of college, he says. The New Jersey native started looking for ways to make connections and get his foot in the door. That’s when his dad helped get his résumé in front of the right person, landing him that job on the set of season two of She’s Gotta Have It.
“I knew I’d been given a great opportunity,” Josbeno says. “I made it my mission to do the best job I could. If I needed to run for coffee, I was going to run for coffee, and I was going to do it well.” That attitude, he says, helped him continue to get jobs on other sets. It’s what helped him land a long-term job as an office associate with 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks, where he works now. Most recently, he worked as a technical assistant on Spike Lee’s latest film, Da 5 Bloods. In between his regular job duties, Josbeno is taking editing classes and learning programs that are specific to jobs in New York. He’s also watching others in the company who work in roles he’d eventually like to have for himself.
“When I look back at my time at York College, I’m incredibly grateful that I took the leap to change my path,” Josbeno says. “I know it was through the support of my family and the faculty around me that I took that chance. It was the best thing I could have done.”