Syracuse University

Brooke Crittendon

Brooke Crittendon '03

True to Life

Brooke Crittendon joined MTV in fall 2004 as an assistant to Dave Sirulnick, executive producer of True Life and “about a million” other MTV programs. “He produces pretty much everything, so as his assistant I was at the center of the wheel,” Crittendon says. “I became part of the MTV machine, which afforded me lots of learning opportunities and allowed me to get to know a lot of the producers.”

In June 2007, she was promoted to her job with the True Life series. Her duties include researching new topics, coordinating production, providing creative feedback, and supervising a staff of six interns. She also manages a series blog that features behind-the-scenes footage, photos, and commentary. “A lot of people’s jobs are about just one thing, and they sort of lose their personal lives and their humanity,” she says. “My work requires me to look at other people’s lives. We do many shows on many different topics, so part of my job is to become a better person and a more understanding listener. It is very rewarding to work here.” 

Appreciative of her SU education and the connections it provides, Crittendon, who was a television-radio-film major, offers students in her field the same valuable advice she received from alumni: Stay focused, take advantage of the resources available at Newhouse, and do as much networking as possible. “SU alumni are everywhere, and we love to help other SU people,” she says. Looking ahead, Crittendon is considering law school, and hopes to one day have her own production company. For now, she’s enjoying every minute of the job of her dreams. “I’m just doing the whole New York City thing,” she says, “and I love it!”