Known as “The EnterTrainer,” Don Simonds’ classes are never dull. Through Don’s eyes, teaching is a live performance and it’s what he’s been doing since he began his career as a corporate trainer. For more than 30 years, he has trained thousands of people across all industries, designed more than 50 training programs, guest lectured at many prestigious colleges and universities and delivered presentations for the American Society for Training and Development and the National Speakers Association.
While working as a trainer, Don was able to utilize his creative skills by writing, producing, directing and acting in more than 20 training films. Presently, Don has written six feature film scripts, four live action short films, two stage plays and one situation comedy for television. His work has been honored with American Screenwriters Association and Telly awards.
Don’s professional background in the corporate and creative arenas gives him the unique ability to teach screenwriting, creative computer applications and business courses.
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Q: How are your classes structured?
A: I lecture at the beginning, demonstrate concepts with a positive model, then assign activities for students to apply the concepts in practice. Activities might involve a case study or editing a script. I use practical examples in the classroom, not just theory.
Q: How do you apply your background in human resources in the Screenwriting course?
A: I give students a unique approach to character development by exploring the characters’ values and experiences from birth until play begins.
Q: What drives you to teach?
A: There are no awards, trophies, or recognition that can top the feeling I get when a student comes to me and says, "You changed my life."
• Telly award for a customer service training video
• American Screenwriters Association, certificate of merit, for the romantic comedy Winter Magic.
• Service award for building productive team relationships with customers leading to total customer satisfaction.
Don's personal website: The EnterTrainer
“I entered a contest called Nextv and guess what? I'm one of the quarterfinalists. WOW! I'm so proud of A CHANCE TO BE LOVED (UNFINISHED LOVE). There are many big names attached to this contest. I'm so happy.”
Yvonne M., Screenwriting student
“Thank you so much for your knowledge, training and wisdom during my time in your Screenwriting class. Several of my friends who are working actors have read my screenplay and are in complete awe. All of that is due to you and your class. I entered the first draft of the screenplay in a couple of competitions last year, and it made it to the semi-finals.”
Stacey F., Screenwriting student