Summer Externship Spotlight - Jonathan Brown

Jonathan Brown pictured with a woman while working at his internship

Jonathan Zion Brown’s interest in entertainment law began early in life, buoyed by a stint as a team attendant to both the Washington Wizards (NBA) and the Washington Mystics (WNBA) in 2019. As soon as he got to the School of Law, Brown sought out classroom and experiential opportunities that combined his deep and personal passion for sports with a budding interest in business law and in-house counsel work.

As a 2L, he spent his spring semester externing part-time with the Mid-American Conference (MAC), a National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I collegiate athletic conference, for law school credit. At MAC, Brown was active both on and off the court. Typical of externships, Brown conducted research and drafted documents, but he also got to assist with the game operations team as a floor manager at both the 2024 MAC Basketball Tournament and the NCAA Women’s Final Four. Instead of commuting to a high-rise office downtown, Brown spent the tail end of his externship courtside at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse, just inches away from the legendary Dawn Staley and women’s basketball superstar Caitlin Clark. 

An avid pro wrestling enthusiast, Brown first heard of the international talent agency William Morris Endeavor after it acquired the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) company in 2023. So, when an internship opportunity with Endeavor popped up on his LinkedIn feed, Brown did not hesitate to apply.

“Within one week after applying, the Global Director of Corporate and Digital Recruitment at Endeavor emailed me,” he says, and “the first two interviews were with business affairs executives in New York City.” Eventually, Brown accepted an internship based in Beverley Hills, California, that he converted into a credit-bearing externship by submitting a self-arranged application to the Experiential Education Faculty Committee. 

A day at Endeavor, Brown says, “starts with a 1-hour training session” with business affairs executives, followed once a week by energetic meetings to discuss negotiations and prospective deals. Work consists of reviewing contracts and “inserting specific details (weekly backends, royalties, advances, recoupment percentage) into the bookings drive or redlining a contract between WME and a major studio.” Working with and drafting contracts, Brown says, has been an extremely valuable part of his externship so far. He can now with confidence “point out contract issues such as the opportunity for the client to cure a breach, indemnification clauses and third-party interference on projects.”

The networking opportunities at William Morris Endeavor have also been indispensable to Jonathan, who makes sure to take advantage of the robust network of entertainment and business professionals at his fingertips.

“The sports and entertainment industry is based on networking and relationships,” he says. Every day, he seeks out advice, whether that is through constructive criticism on small contract assignments or about his postgraduate plans over coffee. “You can be the hardest worker at WME, but you will not advance far if no one knows or likes you,” he notes. “Treat everyone respectfully, and speak to people every time you come across them, no matter what position they are in.”

For students interested in entertainment law externship opportunities, Brown urges resilience and tenacity, especially when it comes to forging relationships in the industry early on.

“Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get the externship/internship you want,” he says. "And start as early as law school. Connect with those who have careers in entertainment law on LinkedIn. If they are in a city near you, ask them for a coffee and you would like to learn about their career. If they are across the country, ask for a 30-minute Zoom/Microsoft Teams call to learn about their career. When networking, ask the person questions about what made them get into their career, the day-to-day operations of their career, what advice they have for you and 2-3 people they know you should connect with. This keeps you on your toes to stay connected with others and puts your name out there. Do not be afraid to ask anyone questions about externships/internships. Show that you are passionate and determined about entering this industry to the person you are networking with so they can understand who you are.”

Students interested in entertainment/sports law externship opportunities can contact Anna Stroinski at