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Career and Education Opportunities for Audio-Visual Directors in Detroit, Michigan

If you want to be an audio-visual director, the Detroit, Michigan area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 110 people are currently employed as audio-visual directors in Michigan. By 2016, this is expected to shrink 17% to ninety people employed. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for audio-visual directors are expected to grow by about 10.3%. In general, audio-visual directors prepare, plan, and operate audio-visual teaching aids for use in education.

A person working as an audio-visual director can expect to earn about $17 per hour or $35,750 per year on average in Michigan and about $20 hourly or $43,390 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Compared with people working in the overall category of Libraries and Museums, people working as audio-visual directors in Michigan earn less. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Libraries and Museums nationally. Jobs in this field include: audio visual secretary, television technician, and library media specialist.

The Detroit area is home to seventy-three schools of higher education, including three within twenty-five miles of Detroit where you can get a degree as an audio-visual director. Audio-visual directors usually hold a Master's degree, so you can expect to spend about six years training to become an audio-visual director if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Audio-Visual Director

In general, audio-visual directors prepare, plan, and operate audio-visual teaching aids for use in education. They also may record, catalogue, and file audio-visual materials.

Audio-visual directors assemble and operate audiovisual equipment such as cameras, film and slide projectors, and recording equipment, for meetings, events, classes, seminars and video conferences. They also instruct users in the selection and layout of audiovisual materials, and assist them in the preparation of instructional materials and the rehearsal of presentations. Equally important, audio-visual directors have to attend conventions and conferences, read trade journals, and communicate with industry insiders to keep abreast of industry developments. Finally, audio-visual directors maintain hardware and software and color laser printers.

Every day, audio-visual directors are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to understand events and object details at a distance. It is also important that they speak clearly.

It is important for audio-visual directors to perform simple maintenance tasks such as cleaning monitors and lenses and changing batteries and light bulbs. They are often called upon to design manuals or related materials for use in conjunction with production materials. They also offer presentations and workshops on the role of multimedia in effective presentations. They are sometimes expected to talk with teachers to decide on course materials and to establish which training aids are best suited to particular grade levels. Somewhat less frequently, audio-visual directors are also expected to design preproduction concepts and incorporate them into outlines and graphics.

Audio-visual directors sometimes are asked to direct and schedule efforts of assistants and other personnel during production. They also have to be able to formulate and ready audiovisual teaching aids and methods for use in school systems and construct and position properties, sets and other equipment. And finally, they sometimes have to design manuals or related materials for use in conjunction with production materials.

Like many other jobs, audio-visual directors must believe in cooperation and coordination and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Detroit include:

  • Archivist. Appraise, edit, and direct safekeeping of permanent records and historically valuable documents. Participate in research activities based on archival materials.
  • Curator. Administer affairs of museum and conduct research programs. Direct instructional, research, and public service activities of institution.
  • Librarian. Administer libraries and perform related library services. Work in a variety of settings, including public libraries, schools, colleges and universities, museums, corporations, government agencies, law firms, non-profit organizations, and healthcare providers. Tasks may include selecting, acquiring, and maintaining library materials; and furnishing reference, bibliographical, and readers' advisory services. May perform in-depth, strategic research, and synthesize, analyze, and filter information. May set up or work with databases and information systems to catalogue and access information.
  • Library Information Technian. Assist librarians by helping readers in the use of library catalogs, databases, and indexes to locate books and other materials; and by answering questions that require only brief consultation of standard reference. Compile records; sort and shelve books; remove or repair damaged books; register patrons; check materials in and out of the circulation process. Replace materials in shelving area (stacks) or files. Includes bookmobile drivers who operate bookmobiles or light trucks that pull trailers to specific locations on a predetermined schedule and assist with providing services in mobile libraries.
  • Museum Technician. Prepare specimens, such as fossils, skeletal parts, and textiles, for museum collection and exhibits. May restore documents or install, arrange, and exhibit materials.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Audio-Visual Director Training

Lawrence Technological University - Southfield, MI

Lawrence Technological University, 21000 West Ten Mile Road, Southfield, MI 48075-1058. Lawrence Technological University is a small university located in Southfield, Michigan. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,318 students and an admission rate of 60%. Lawrence Technological University has a master's degree program in Educational/Instructional Media Design which graduated five students in 2008.

Wayne State University - Detroit, MI

Wayne State University, 656 West Kirby Street, Detroit, MI 48202. Wayne State University is a large university located in Detroit, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 31,025 students and an admission rate of 79%. Wayne State University has master's degree, post-master's certificate, and doctor's degree programs in Educational/Instructional Media Design which graduated twenty-three, four, and five students respectively in 2008.

Eastern Michigan University - Ypsilanti, MI

Eastern Michigan University, , Ypsilanti, MI 48197. Eastern Michigan University is a large university located in Ypsilanti, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 22,137 students and an admission rate of 75%. Eastern Michigan University has a master's degree program in Educational/Instructional Media Design which graduated fifteen students in 2008.


Detroit, Michigan
Detroit, Michigan photo by Durova

Detroit is located in Wayne County, Michigan. It has a population of over 912,062, which has shrunk by 4.1% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Detroit, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Detroit are priced at $108,900 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, eighty-five new homes were built in Detroit, down from one hundred fifty-four the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Detroit are health care, educational services, and transportation equipment. For men, it is transportation equipment, construction, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average commute to work is about 28 minutes. More than 11.0% of Detroit residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.2%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Detroit is 27.0%, which is greater than Michigan's average of 14.3%.

The percentage of Detroit residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 37.7%, is less than both the national and state average. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Detroit is home to the Memorial Park Marina and the Detroit Golf Club as well as Chene Park and Mallett Playground. Visitors to Detroit can choose from Corktown Inn, Clark's Motel and Days Inn of Downtown Detroit for temporary stays in the area.