Strategies for Planning an Amazing Career in Broadcasting
Did you know that an estimated 243 million American adults tune in to their favorite radio stations on a monthly basis? Or that 47 percent of people prefer watching the news as opposed to reading it (as reported by USA Today)? Despite what some may say, there are still plenty of opportunities to have a great career in broadcasting. Although the needs of the industry may be changing as technology evolves, there will always be a need for on-air and behind the scenes talent. As you begin to plan your education and career, there are plenty of steps you can take to set yourself up for a successful future. Take a closer look at three strategies that will help you prepare for a career in broadcasting.
Get the experience you’ll need now
To be considered for a broadcasting role, hiring professionals are not simply looking for candidates with a relevant education. On top of taking college classes, senior members of radio stations, television stations, and online media groups want people who’ve already gained experience. From student radio stations, to college television channels, to media internships, you have tons of opportunities to work in the industry before earning your college degree. When you consistently work in these kinds of roles, you can pick up valuable skills, such as learning how to use radio equipment. Having tangible skills not only makes it more likely that you’ll one day score an amazing job, but it will also give you the confidence of knowing how to perform your future duties.
Shadow broadcasting professionals in your area
In addition to taking on roles with student television or radio broadcasting, and working in internship roles, ask local broadcasters if you can shadow them for a day. You can start doing this by visiting the websites of local TV and/or radio stations, and then finding the email addresses of professionals in the same role(s) you are considering. From there, send them an email introducing yourself, your career goals, and request to shadow them for either a few hours or an entire day. This experience is perfect if you’ve not yet gotten an up-close look at the industry. Before contacting local broadcasting professionals, be sure to check with a parent to make sure that this idea has their approval.
Explore colleges with broadcast journalism majors
If you are starting to think about where to attend college, now is the time to find out which options are best for broadcast journalism majors. As of 2019, College Magazine ranks Northwestern University, Emerson College, the University of Georgia, and State University of New York at Oswego as some of the top choices. The advantages of selecting a college that is known for broadcasting include having better access to internships, state-of-the-art broadcasting technology, and exceptional professors with specific industry knowledge.
Instead of waiting to get the education and experience needed to succeed in radio, television, or online broadcasting, do as much as you can now. Even though your opportunities will be somewhat limited until college, the earlier you can get your foot in the door of the industry, the better.