WIEP: The Los Angeles Arts, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Sectors

Information and Application

Program Information and Expectations

Students will be selected to participate in this short-term course through a competitive application process. Applicants must be in good academic standing. All undergraduates are eligible to apply for this course. Preference will be given to first and second year students who are beginning their career exploration. This course must be taken for a letter grade.

Professor Rob DiGisi will serve as the faculty director for the course and will be in residence with the students throughout the program. Please note that students are subject to Penn’s disciplinary guidelines while on a Wharton-sponsored program.

Site visits for past iterations of this course have included Disney, Spotify, Paramount, Netflix, Sony Pictures, Amazon Music, and United Talent Agency.

New this year, Professor Rob DiGisi will leverage his extensive experience as a sports, leisure and lifestyle sales and marketing executive. Rob has created new profit centers, distribution channels and brand development platforms for organizations including start-ups, pro-sports leagues and multi-billion dollar corporations. In various roles, he has partnered with NASCAR, the NBA, the NFL, Universal Pictures, and AEG, among other media giants.

Course Requirements

Participants will be required to attend two, pre-travel classes, which will provide an introduction to the arts, entertainment, sports, and media sectors and the Greater Los Angeles Area. Students will conduct research and prepare case studies that they will present at the second pre-trip session. Attendance and participation in these classes are part of the grade for the course. Required readings will also be assigned.

While on the travel portion of the program, students will be required to attend all scheduled lectures, business-site visits, networking events, and cultural tours. A paper will be due approximately one month after travel is completed.

Business-Site Visits

Through site visits and meetings with senior managers and alumni, students will gain an understanding of the arts, entertainment, sports, and media sectors in the Greater Los Angeles Area.

Cultural Events and Excursions

Students will have many opportunities to explore the Greater Los Angeles Area. Several events and excursions will be scheduled as part of the program (and are included in the package price).

Program Deadlines, Fees, and Logistics

Program Dates and Deadlines

Completed Application Due October 13
Notification of Students October 23
Payment Due Spring 2024 bursar bill
Pre-Trip Class 1 Spring semester/TBD (accepted students will be notified of date and time via email)
Pre-Trip Class 2 Spring semester/TBD (accepted students will be notified of date and time via email)
Travel Dates March 4-8, 2024 *

* The program will officially end the evening of March 8; students may leave that evening or on March 9.

Program Fees

The program fee for the course is $600.

This fee covers course supplies, most meals, lodging for the duration of the program, ground transportation, business site visits, cultural excursions, and fees for services.

The fee does not include:

  • Airfare
  • Some meals
  • Personal phone, email, laundry
  • Health insurance
  • Personal spending money
  • Incidental expenses not included in the fee (snacks, outside entertainment, etc.)

Payment will be due on the spring 2024 bursar bill.

Financial Assistance

Thanks to generous support from alumni, financial assistance is available for WIEP. Please check the box on the application if you would like to be considered for financial assistance. We will notify you about your financial assistance upon admittance to the program.

Travel Logistics

Airline Tickets: You are responsible for booking and paying for your airfare to/from Los Angeles. You must arrive at the hotel in Los Angeles by 1:00 p.m. on Monday, March 4. The program will conclude the evening of March 8; you may fly out that evening after the closing dinner or you can depart the morning of March 9.

Accommodations: Living arrangements in Los Angeles will be made for all participants. Rooms will be double occupancy.

Insurance: All participants must show proof of current health insurance coverage before departing on the program.

Ground Transportation: Participants will travel by private coach to all business and cultural sites.

COVID-19: All student participants must be vaccinated and boosted

Meals: Please contact Ariel Robbins if you have any dietary restrictions or food allergies.

Cancellation Policy

The Wharton School reserves the right to cancel the course for any reason before the departure date. Participants will be notified as soon as possible in the case of trip cancellation.

If the Wharton School cancels the program for any reason before the date of departure, all monies received will be refunded.

Please note: If a participant cancels prior to January 15, 2024, 50 percent of the payment will be refunded. On or after January 15, the entire payment is non-refundable.

Program Contact Information

Ariel Robbins, Associate Director
Wharton Undergraduate Division
Email: aarobbin@wharton.upenn.edu