Future Broadcasters: Engage!

Future Broadcasters: Engage!

Written by Liam Nixon, Prairies Regional Director It’s hard to fathom, but the 2016 summer vacation is quickly coming to an end for post-secondary students across the country. It’s time to re-engage the brain. For some, it’s the first foray into a broadcasting program; for others, the end is near. Whether you are about to

Written by Liam Nixon, Prairies Regional Director

It’s hard to fathom, but the 2016 summer vacation is quickly coming to an end for post-secondary students across the country. It’s time to re-engage the brain. For some, it’s the first foray into a broadcasting program; for others, the end is near. Whether you are about to enter the first year of your program, or will be in the graduating class of 2017, there are a few important things to keep in mind.

1. BECOME A MULTI-TASKER… NOW!
This is especially true for the TV folks. The days of news stations hiring ‘reporters’, ‘editors’ or ‘shooters’ are quickly coming to an end. At Global Lethbridge, every one of our team member is a Videographer: they chase, shoot, write, voice and edit all of their own content. It’s a growing trend in TV news, so whether you want to be on-camera or behind one, familiarize yourself with both areas.

2. KNOW THE NEWS
This might seem like an obvious one, but you would be surprised how many aspiring newsies don’t have a solid knowledge of what is happening in the world around them. Don’t just read the headlines – actively pursue different versions of big stories, and start thinking of how they resonate in your own community. In my experience, the best story-tellers are the ones who take current news and answer the “So what?” question to the local audience.

3. VOLUNTEER
I get it, between holding down a full class load and, for some, a paid job, any student’s free time is a precious commodity. That being said, look to fill some of that free time with volunteering. Most cities have at least one radio and/or TV station and will usually be open to the idea of free help. If volunteering isn’t an option, ask if you can job shadow. Mixing in that first-hand, real-life experience with your studies will look great on a resume and better prepare you for that first paid job. Speaking of that first job…

4. EMBRACE THE SMALL MARKETS
This holds true for first jobs and internships. The reality is, media jobs (especially traditional ‘news’ jobs) are becoming fewer and fewer. Too many students are convinced they will go straight from school into a medium or large market. For most, that’s not the reality. Be ready to move ANYwhere you must to secure that first job. Also, again for the TV folk, don’t tie yourself down to only TV jobs. Starting in radio strengthens your writing and often times, you get more repetition in a radio news job, which improves your on-air performance. The same idea applies to internships. There is a certain allure to spending a few weeks in a major market newsroom, and there is nothing wrong with that, but the chance of getting anything on the air can be slim. Speaking personally, if an intern proves within the first few days that he/she is capable of contributing to our on-air content, grab a camera and get out there!

Good luck to all of the broadcasting students as you embark on your 2016/2017 school year!

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