Categories: Regional Date: Jul 30, 2012 Title: Local parishioner has dream internship at London Olympics
By Rebecca Drake
(Photo courtesy of Joseph Dziok)
SPRINGFIELD – Since June 16, Joseph Dziok has been working 13-hour days, seven days a week as an intern with NBC’s Venue Engineering Olympics crew in London.
And in spite of the relentless schedule, the college sophomore is still finding time to practice his Catholic faith.
A parishioner of St. Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr Basilica Parish in Chicopee, and organizer of his parish’s youth group, Dziok is a student at the University of Hartford’s Hartt School of Music, where he is studying music production and technology. He will be a junior at the university this fall.
“This internship with NBC is the perfect experience for me to learn about engineering for large-scale televised productions,” Dziok told iobserve in an emailed response to reporter’s questions.
His duties at the Olympics have included working with the cable crew, preparing hundreds of cables for each of the Olympic venues; cleaning more than 50 Canon camera lenses; and supervising the preparation of engineering kits for each camera operator and sound engineer.
Dziok told iobserve about some of the challenges and rewards of this demanding internship.
“Working for NBC's Venue Engineering at the Olympics is challenging because it requires the engineers to build high quality video, audio, and edit systems in a very small amount of time,” he said. “The engineers here are creating systems that you very rarely have the opportunity to see because of the advanced technology and hard work that goes into putting them together.
“The Olympics is NBC's opportunity to pull out all stops,” Dziok said. “These engineers are some of the best in the world and it is amazing to be able to learn from them and work side by side with them.”
While he admits the rigorous schedule makes it difficult to find time for prayer and Mass attendance, Dziok said, “I am fortunate that my mentor and boss, Billy, is very understanding about my faith, as he is a devout Greek Orthodox. He allows me to leave early on Saturdays so I can go to 5 p.m. Mass.
“I am also staying with the Conventual Franciscan Friars here in Waterloo, at St. Patrick's Rectory,” he said. “I wake up and say morning prayer with the friars before I head out the door for work.”
Dziok also said he has discovered a rich faith tradition in the city of London.
“London, when you look for it, is filled with a deep sense of faith in God,” he said. “Although many of them are Protestant, the very religious Anglicans are very similar to Catholics. But even so, there are many Catholics here as well.”
And thoughts of his own parish work back in Chicopee are not far from his mind. “In my free time, I have also been working to plan a summer camp (which will take place the week I get home) for our San Damiano Youth Group, and a family adoration and mission evening in August.”
Dziok will continue to work 12 to 14 hours a day, seven days a week, helping with repair and maintenance work on equipment, both at the field shop and on site at the venues, until the final Olympic events, the closing ceremonies, are over. But he welcomes the experience that will move him toward his goal of working in either communications or in the film industry, recording soundtracks for Catholic media and films.
“Despite the demanding job, I know that this is only a vehicle that will take me to where I feel God is calling me, to be an evangelist through media and communications,” he told iobserve. “I feel that God has given me this opportunity to help me get there.”
For more photos and reflections on Dziok’s experiences in London, visit the W. Mass Catholic Voices blog, which can be accessed through the link on the iobserve homepage.