Tags: jon stewart | veterans | tv | iraq war | critic

Jon Stewart's Veterans TV Program Helps Troops Enter the Biz After War

Image: Jon Stewart's Veterans TV Program Helps Troops Enter the Biz After War
(AP Photo/Brad Barket, file)

By    |   Tuesday, 26 May 2015 03:39 PM

Jon Stewart created a program three years ago to help veterans break into the TV industry and now, with "The Daily Show" host's August departure nearing, he is urging other programs to start their own initiatives.

The program meets once a week for five weeks, combining experience and networking. At the end, a job fair is held where several vets have landed positions in television.

Stewart thought up the idea for veterans to get a “crash course” in the TV business in 2013 after he was contacted by the American Corporate Partners trying to find a job for a veteran, according to the New York Daily News.

“This is ready to franchise,” Stewart, who ironically was an outspoken critic of the Iraq War, told The New York Times. “Please steal our idea. It isn’t charity. To be good in this business you have to bring in different voices from different places, and we have this wealth of experience that just wasn’t being tapped.”

According to the Veterans in Film and Television, few veterans go into the entertainment industry, The Times noted.

“There are well-worn channels into this industry that are closed-off to veterans,” Stewart said. “You get into the television industry generally by going to certain colleges known for having good television programs, getting internships and getting to know people who work in the industry. A lot of veterans never had that opportunity because they were busy at war. This is a way to give them that chance.”

Nathan Witmer, an Army vet who left active duty in 2010, sold medical equipment for two years before joining the program.

“It was actually inspirational,” Witmer, now an associate field segment producer for “The Daily Show,” told The Times. “We hear ‘Thank you for your service’ all the time, but here was concrete action, people working to really make a difference. And it changed lives. I’m proof of that.”

Former Marine lieutenant Justine Cabulong is a production coordinator at “The Daily Show.”

“I feel like the Marines was a good preparation for ‘The Daily Show,’ actually,” Cabulong told The Times. “The show is high tempo; it’s pretty chaotic; you have to work together. We might be on the road, not be getting much sleep. But at the same time, it’s not a war zone here. No one is shooting at us. Yes, the printer might have just died, but we can call the printer guy.”

Twitter users supported Stewart’s initiative:




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Jon Stewart created a program three years ago to help veterans break into the TV industry and now, with "The Daily Show" host's August departure nearing, he is urging other programs to start their own initiatives.
jon stewart, veterans, tv, iraq war, critic
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2015-39-26
Tuesday, 26 May 2015 03:39 PM
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