2018-2019 Catalog and Student Handbook 
    Jun 19, 2024  
2018-2019 Catalog and Student Handbook [Archived Catalog]

Film Crew Technology Technical Certificate

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Program and Career Description

The Film Crew Technology Program (FCT) is especially designed for individuals who want to enter the motion-picture business as "below-the-line" crew (the technicians that perform the majority of work on a motion-picture production). The FCT Program was started in 2008 as part of the Film Incentive plan for the State of Tennessee. The curriculum is constantly influenced by the Director of the FCT Program and the FCT Board of Directors.

This certificate is designed for the student who does not intend to transfer into a baccalaureate degree program.

Career Entry-Level Pay Median Pay Experienced Pay
Audio & Video Equipment Technician $25,630 $38,120 $56,950

Career and salary information taken from JOBS4TN.GOV.  Check out this website for additional information about job descriptions, education requirements and abilities, and supply and demand for these careers.  For additional information from a national perspective, go to  Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S.  Department of Labor on the internet at www.bls.gov .  Visit the Occupational Outlook Handbook on this website.  Salaries are not guaranteed.


The Film Crew Technology program trains students in motion-picture lighting, grip, art department, HD cinematography, Digital Information Technician, sound and post-production (editing). For students wanting to enter the motion-picture industry or transfer to a four-year film program this program is extremely advantageous. The FCT program utilizes the latest technology and techniques commonly used in the professional motion-picture industry and is the only program in the State of Tennessee with professional working Grip/Electric production vehicle.

The program begins every August and is currently limited to 16 students per year. Please see the Film Crew Program Director for Advising and scheduling of classes.

Admission Requirements

Due to enrollment limitations applications are screened using the criteria outlined below:

  1. Applicants must meet the general requirements for admission to the College.
  2. Complete a Request for Admission to Film Crew Technology Program form available at http://www.columbiastate.edu/academics/extended-services/film-crew-technology. Forms are also available upon request from the Program Director. Please email david.smith@columbiastate.edu or call 615.790.4410.
  3. Student must place at the Competency 1 or higher for have completed Competency 1 in Learning Support Reading and Writing as determined by ACT sub-scores, the institutional challenge exam/placement process or acceptable equivalent.
  4. Prior to admission in the program, students must be able to visually assess colors and be able to determine the difference between Red, Black, Green & White.

Admissions Process

  1. Applicant must meet the general requirements for admission to the College.
  2. Applicants must complete and submit the Application to participate in the Film Crew Technology form to the Program Director by May 1st.
  3. Applicants are not required but are encouraged to submit two letters of recommendations to the Program Director.
  4. Students must place at the Competency 1 or higher or have completed reading and writing as determined by ACT sub- scores, the institutional challenge exam/placement process or acceptable equivalent.
  5. Applicants who meet the stated admissions requirements will be invited to an on campus oral interview. Students who live outside of Tennessee may be granted an exception to interview using video conferencing technology.
  6. Admission decisions will be made by June 30. Admitted students who complete registration requirements will begin the program in the fall semester.
  7. If the class has not reached capacity by the end of the Summer semester, students completing the application requirements after May 1st may be considered for an interview on an individual basis.

Selection Criteria

  1. Applicants will be interviewed by a FCT panel. The panel will consist of the Program Director, program alum and an industry employer or part time faculty.
  2. Applicants must obtain a minimum of 3.0 out of 5 points from the oral interview to be eligible for admission into the Film Crew Technology Program.
  3. Each member of the FCT panel will evaluate the applicant. The members will score the applicant using a scale of 1-5 points. The scores from each member will then be averaged to obtain an interview score.
  4. Students will be ranked by score and application date. The top 28 ranked students will receive admission to the FCT program.
  5. Once selected students will be given a deadline to complete the registration process for Fall semester. Admissions will be granted to the next person on the ranked list if a student does not register by the deadline.

Continuation Requirements

  1. Maintain a passing grade of "C" or better in all FCT courses.
  2. Maintain professional conduct in the classroom and on outside assignments as outlined in the student code of conduct handbook.
  3. By the end of the Spring semester, students must be able to meet the following physical requirements that are standard to crew positions in the motion picture industry:
    1. Lift up to 80lbs.
    2. Climb a ladder of at least 20 feet.
    3. Be able to stand for minimum of 2 hours.

Film Crew Technology Technical Certificate Sample Academic Plan - Total Credit Hours: 33

Summer Semester - Total Credit Hours: 3

Requirements for Graduation Include:

  • Total certificate hours must be at least 33.
  • earning 25% of total program credits in residence at Columbia State.
  • earn a GPA of at least 2.0 in courses required for the certificate.

If you have completed TN eCampus courses, run a degree audit from the student tab in myChargerNet to determine how these courses apply to this program.


For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program and other important information, please review Gainful Employment Disclosure for this certificate.

For more information contact:
David Smith at
david.smith@columbiastate.edu or 615.790.4410
Williamson Campus
at 615.790.5926

Columbia State Community College, a Tennessee Board of Regents institution, is an equal opportunity, affirmative action educational institution.
CoSCC- FCT-CERT-02-14-18

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