Have you ever wanted to be in front of the cameras as a sports reporter for ESPN? Have you ever imagined yourself on the evening news giving the blow by blow account of the most exciting football game? Do you want a career delivering the latest and most exciting updates on the current sports season? If you want a career as a sports reporter, the first step is to become an intern.
As an intern, you may be assigned to do the dirty and menial jobs. However, if you keep your eye on the prize, you’ll soon find that becoming an intern can be highly educational and help you get your career as a sports reporter on track. Here’s what you need to know to become an intern:
- Polish up your resume. Focus on your research, written and verbal communication skills. Since you may not have an extensive work experience background, you need to divert the attention towards your other special skills. For example, are you highly motivated and willing to learn? Do you have a pleasing personality and are you able to think quickly on your feet? Do you work well under pressure and be productive with a team? Are you ambitious and willing to do whatever it takes to succeed? Are you familiar with various editing and production equipment that may be helpful in the field? Indicate what you know so you can show what skills you can contribute as an intern.
- Apply for an internship. Broadcasting companies won’t know you exist unless you knock on their door. Look for announcements at the company website or check the local paper. You may even want to go directly to the TV station or your local station to see if there are any internship openings. Check also with the school or career placement office. When you are ready to intern, apply in person and present a very professional and upbeat front. Wear a suit and tie and be sure to look your best.
- Be ready to do the dirty work. When you’re at the bottom rungs, it’s your job to do the things no one else wants to do. This may mean picking up the morning coffee for everyone, researching the background of an athlete or making sure the production is ready to go before the camera starts rolling. They may be menial tasks but you will learn a lot if you remain observant. No one immediately lands right in front of the camera without climbing the ladder first.
- Be prepared. Do your best at every single assignment, no matter how menial or mind numbing it is. Your attitude counts more than you know. You are constantly being observed when you are an intern so be patient. If you show a less than professional attitude or act with entitlement, you’ll shoot yourself on the foot. Research beforehand on the personalities you’ll be meeting, plus any statistics you may be able to contribute.
- Find a mentor. Another way to get your foot in the door to become an intern is to get a mentor who is already working in the industry. Perhaps your communications professor works for a TV station or you know someone who is willing to take you under his wing. A mentor is a great way to learn the ropes of the job.
Keep these things in mind so you can become an intern as a sports
reporter. Do your research and show passion for the sport and your
industry. Be enthusiastic about what you are doing so you can give the
best impression to those you work with. If it all goes well, you may
soon find yourself in front of the camera rather than behind the news.