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How can I get experience in sports broadcasting over summer before college starts?

I am going to school for sports broadcasting and would like some background in it. broadcast-media broadcast-television broadcast radio-broadcasting

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6 answers

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Duane’s Answer

The best plan of action would be to reach out to the General Manager of each local tv station (or the top 3 in your market)- call, then follow-up with an email if they ask. You have a good chance of getting them on the phone only once. If you leave a message, be direct and confident. Tell them you're wanting some practical experience with a broadcast sports dept. and ask if you could do a free internship over the summer to see how it's done so that you're not going to college as someone with no practical experience. They'll appreciate this. The reason I suggest the GM is that this position is the boss of the entire TV station, so if he/she respects your request, you'll get in. If you go directly to the Sports Director, they may not have the authority to have you come in on a regular basis- (liability and stuff like that). They're also very busy and you'll spend all summer trying to get them on the phone.

FWIW, if you want to learn media production in general... I work a lot with Media Concepts in Columbus. Ben Kalb is the GM there. You may want to reach out to him with the same request- learning tv production over the summer (as an intern) so you're not going into college as a newbie. They may even have some PT paid positions, doesn't hurt ts ask.

Even if you want to specialize in sports, you'll need to know the entire production workflow. I can offer no guarantees what any of these people will say or do, but you can bet you'll be respected for asking and seeking their guidance- and that goes a long way.

hth, //dc

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Elle’s Answer

I worked as a runner for bigger sports productions through Kwokman productions (now called Ming I believe)
I made great contacts and learned a lot of great behind the scenes knowledge.
The experience was great for my resume and the contacts I made helped me get the job at ESPN when I applied.

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Caleb Reid’s Answer


Good question. I obtained my first sports media internship by simply emailing a few local stations to gain experience. It was unpaid; I actually had to pay $5 per day to park, but it set me up for my future internship with ESPN, along with an array of other experiences gained while in college. What you put into the internship or observation is what you'll get out of it. There's no such thing as a dumb question. Absorb as much knowledge and hands-on experience as possible. View your internships throughout your early career as stepping stones. One internship is an investment that will get you to the next. Start building your network now!

Good luck!

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Michela’s Answer

During the summer time, I looked for every and any sports internship in my area.I also contacted the the sports teams such as little league baseball, local hockey, basketball, etc. to see if they needed any volunteers or needed any help during the season. I also watched sports constantly on ESPN and other networks and tried to figure out what I liked best about the industry and how I wanted to contribute.

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Barry’s Answer

Hi, Mitchel!

There are a number of ways now that you can get that experience. The most obvious, of course, is internships - unpaid work to show potential employers down the road that you have both the skills and dedication that the employer would want.

Plus, internships help you start making connections with both potential employers and with the peers with whom you'd be working. No one does it alone, so if you start helping out other people as an intern, they may very well come back to help you when it counts - either to get a job or to do a job.

Another way to gain experience is to engineer opportunities for yourself. Say, for example, there is a youth sports tournament going on in your area. Perhaps you could webcast the event for the organizer. How would you do that? One way is simply to use your cell phone - you could live stream it using Ustream, Periscope, etc. If you were to get rosters for the teams, you could even do play-by-play.

There are other ways you could do it as well, depending on how much money you want to spend. Any way you do it, the parents would be over the moon, and even if nobody watches, telling a would-be employer that you made something out of nothing would definitely be a plus for you.

Hope these suggestions spur some creativity for you. You're staring at a blank canvas. How you paint it is largely up to you.

Best regards,

Barry Abrams
ESPN Feature producer
Host/producer - ESPN "In The Gate" thoroughbred podcast

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Charles’s Answer

Find an internship. Be humble and be willing to do anything. It may not pay you anything as well. Interns who treat it like a real job do get hired.