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Paramount Global Announces Participants for 2024-2025 Writers Mentoring Program (EXCLUSIVE)

Paramount Global has chosen the nine writers who will participate in the Paramount Writers Mentoring Program for 2024-2025. Selected in the program’s 20th year are Jamil Akim O’Quinn, Wei Ling Chang, Adrian Colón Jr., Jai Franklin Sarki, Seth Harrington, Natalie Higdon, writing team Dijorn Moss & Trinea Moss and Nick Spates.

The Paramount Office of Global Inclusion helms the program. It is an eight-month-long program that provides mentorships, career development, support and personal access to executives and the decision-making processes for new writers in television. The program’s end goal is to prepare them for a television career.

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For 16 weeks, participants will attend small workshop-style meetings with showrunners, executive producers, agents, managers and development and current executives to better understand how the writing and television business works. The writers are paired with an executive from the Paramount studio brands for regular meetings, fostering discussions about their work and receiving valuable creative feedback and advice to advance their professional journey.

The group of mentors for this year includes:

  • Carly Berg, manager of comedy development at CBS

  • Marissa Brooks, director of drama development at CBS Studios

  • RaeAnn Bussola, VP of development at Paramount Television Studios

  • Sam Campos, director of drama development at CBS Studios

  • Marci Cooperstein, SVP of current at CBS

  • Devin Crossfield, manager of development at Paramount Television Studios

  • Kate Gill, SVP of development at Paramount Television Studios

  • Cameron Johnson, senior manager of current at Paramount Television Studios

  • Michael Kaplan, VP of current at CBS

  • Julie Katchen, VP of current at Paramount Television Studios

  • Sean Kotzin, VP of comedy development at CBS Studios

  • Rob Luchow, SVP of drama development at CBS Studios

  • Amanda Palley, SVP of current at CBS

  • Kelly Pancho, VP of current at CBS Studios

  • Pamela Soper, SVP of current at CBS

  • Victoria Vargas, director of current at CBS

“The impact of the Paramount Writers Mentoring Program resonates throughout our organization and the broader industry,” said Paramount’s Tiffany Smith-Anoa’i, executive vice president of diversity and inclusion, west coast, in a statement. “With a thriving alumni network and dedicated Paramount leaders, we continue our commitment to nurturing up-and-coming writers, providing them with exposure, access and invaluable opportunities as they embark on their professional journeys. We have confidence that these nine exceptionally gifted creatives will carry forward the legacy of our past cohorts, who have successfully contributed to the staffing of numerous shows.”

This year’s participants were selected from a pool of more than 2,500 applicants. They came from various creative backgrounds, some working on projects like “The Equalizer,” “NCIS: Los Angeles,” “Home Economics,” “Tracker,” “Project Runaway” and “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?”, among others.

The mentoring program has helped launch the careers of 101 writers in television, including Leonard Chang (“Snowfall”), Akela Cooper (“Star Trek: Strange New Worlds,” “M3gan”), Howard Jordan Jr. (“The Neighborhood”), Angela Kang (“The Walking Dead”), April Shih (“Dave”), Aaron Rashaan Thomas (“S.W.A.T.”), Miranda Kwok (“The Cleaning Lady”), Zahir McGhee (“Queens”) and Julie Wong (“Grey’s Anatomy”), among numerous others.

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