Study abroad tips

Bimina is a multimedia journalist. She freelances for few NGO and online publications like Voices of NY at CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, reporting original stories of south Asian communities in NY and translating Nepali/ Hindi articles to English.
Bimina is also collaboratively working as an associate producer and director on a half hour documentary “Reviving Nepal Bhasa” focusing on dying culture and language of endangered community of Newars, indigenous to central Nepal. The documentary covers the history, reason and solutions on the topic of endangered culture covering Newar communities in Kathmandu, Nepal and around the world. She has also done Narration in the Documentary “Reviving Nepal Bhasa.”

She has worked as a production associate at CUNY Television, CUNY TV. She assisted the monthly magazine style show “Asian American Life” from Sep-Dec 2013.In Summer 2013 worked for NDTV 24×7 (New Delhi Television) in New Delhi, India with documentary production team, shows like “India Matters” and “Truth Vs. Hype.”
Growing up Bimina had worked as a RJ in a South Asian radio show in Dallas,TX called “Radio Sallam Nameste (104.5 FM).” She stepped a foot in world of media very early at the age of 17 as a Model in her home country Nepal.

It can be a hard decision to leave your country and go somewhere unknown where you don’t know what you are getting into. Taking a chance requires a lot of courage, I am glad I did it because my three months internship in India was a life changing experience.

In 2013, as a graduating student in Journalism major in CUNY York College, it was a requirement for me to get three credits of internship at a news organization. Living in the journalism capital of world, New York, there are plenty news organization I could intern with, but as a person always seeking for new adventure I applied for a summer internship in New Delhi, India with NDTV( New Delhi Television) which is one of the oldest and prestigious news channel in India.
After the infamous Gang rape case in New Delhi, my friends and family started to get worried about me, they were not sure if I should do this internship. At the same time Journalism department was not too sure if that was a doable summer fieldwork, no one in journalism department had done an international internship before. I was sure I wanted this and I didn’t want to let this opportunity slide, I was even ready to go on my own expense and did not care if the college gave me credits for it. However, I did keep pushing it to the department and eventually it did work out, infact I found I could get a study abroad scholarship from student development and I applied for it. I got a check for 3 grants before I left.

I arranged for a place to stay in Delhi but I had to get accustomed to the lifestyle, people and transportation. It took me few days to get use to the weather, which was almost over 90-100 degree everyday. I got sick with stomach virus, I could not leave room for first four days. Let that not discourage you, it only lasted few days, I realized our body is an amazing engineer, it knows how to adapt and readjust. After few days of nightmare, I woke up to start my first day at the job.

HR introduced me to the news desk, but nobody looked at me to say hello, and all were busy with the content flow of news or the news making. I was supposed to be supervised and taught how everything worked in newsroom, but they barely had any time for me. Someone quickly ran through the system and showed me around a bit, but I had nothing particular to do. I followed the Chief Editor everywhere, since it’s an hourly live broadcast, duties changed and I had to figure who is in charge and shadow them in the newsroom, editing and graphics room and even to the PCR (Production control room). I could not have much part in it since I was untrained and they will not risk giving me a responsibility for a show going on air, therefore after a mutual understanding of situation we decided to switch departments.
I was sent to production the next week, where a producer and his team were working on “the ganga project.” (The Ganges River) My primary roles as a production assistant was to check, transcribe and ingest footages, help the editor to locate and edit, research and fact check.
After learning some production skills, I was moved to “Documentary department” I was working with the 30 mins show on weekend called “India matters” where they focused on the social, religious and political issues of India. Additional to what I was already doing, I was also asked to go out on shoot, help the cameraman, hold SimSats (an interview of a source on camera via telephone without the presence of a host), towards the end of my internship I was working for one of the most famous 30 mins weekend show in NDTV called “Truth Vs. Hype”, which is an investigative journalistic show, mostly focused on the political and social corruption in India.
Working in production and documentaries opened the whole new world for me, I loved the way how documentaries are elaborate way of reporting, one can choose a diverse way to tell the story and depending on the show, you generally have more time to report and research, whereas newsrooms are always a chaos. I got obsessed with documentaries, I took out time to make some personal documentaries on different parts of Delhi, and I even travelled around India with my camera.

After returning to NY, I applied at CUNY TV at channel 75 as a production assistant intern, and I was working with CUNY TV on a monthly magazine format show called “Asian American life.”
After Graduating and working freelance for a while, now I have collaboratively, made a documentary of my own and working on screening it globally.

The three months in India not only taught me about different forms of journalism but a different way of life. I learnt that people in developing countries might not have all the facilities that we have here but they make the best of what they have against all odds.
Mostly I realized that worst things could happen in the best of places, do not back out from opportunity fearing that it may or may not happen to you.

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