Friday, August 9, 2013

Saying Yes and Going Places

I just finished taking one of my favorite classes ever.
I had never taken an intercession class before and was a little apprehensive about it being a “media tour” class. To say I was pleasantly surprised would be an understatement! It was a really great experience and I would do it over again in a heartbeat.

We met a lot of people and went to a few different places so get ready for lots of pictures.

The first guest-speaker was Lisa Monahan. She is a reporter for News9 in Oklahoma and a graduate of UCO. The first thing she did was make everyone switch seats in 10 seconds because she wanted to show us how quickly things can change in the news world and to always be prepared for anything. She told us a lot of “negative” things about the news world, not to scare us off but to make sure that we understand that the “news reporter life” is most definitely NOT glamorous. When she came in, she was carrying 3 large bags filled with a large variety of things. She told us that, as a reporter, you HAVE to be prepared for anything. Food, water, changes of clothes, make-up, iPad/laptop/etc, notebook, toothbrush/paste are some of the items that she recommends you keep with you at all times because you don't know when you will need something and won’t have the opportunity to go and get when you're out in the field working. 
I really appreciate how honest she was with us. She gave really great advice on how to deal with the kind of material you will probably see when you're a reporter. She told us to "find a really good outlet" and to take everything in stride. I've always heard that being a reporter is something you have to really have a passion for because it takes away your "free" time. You're always on call and its long hours and you rarely get vacation time. It sounds equally exciting and daunting.

Later that same day, we scampered off to the News9 facility. 

Our News9 tour is one of my new favorite things. We got there just in time to watch the noon show and it was SO COOL. We spent the first 10 minutes or so in the control room and got to watch the guys in there in action then we spent the rest of the show in the studio watching from behind the cameras. Their studio is so big and they have so much equipment. It was weird/cool to watch the weather guy do his thing live. Then the coolest thing happened. We were walking through one of the desk/cubicle areas and out of nowhere Jim Gardner showed up to show us their helicopter! I tried my best not to freak out and completely fangirl but I couldn't NOT take a picture with him. He is seriously the nicest guy! It was such a surreal moment and if I hadn't of gotten my picture I think I wouldn't believe it actually happened. 
We had a few other guys come in and speak to us about different aspects of the broadcast/media.


Vance Harrison (right) and Mark Norman (left) were really interesting fellows. The main thing that I took away from them was to show enthusiasm and to "FOLLOW THE MONEY."  Vance said to keep resumes short and sweet and to be earnest.

Our 2nd destination was the National Cowboy & Western Museum and it was a blast! We spent about 30 minutes talking to Mike Edminson about non-profits and what he does then we spent an hour or so exploring the museum. It was so much fun! 

I felt like a little kid again and I loved it.

Later that day Jenny Monroe, the media specialist for the Edmond Police department, came in to talk to us. 

Her story was incredible! She worked in television news for about 17 years then left and worked as a free-lance photojournalist and even went to Africa. At the start of this year she started working for the Edmond PD. She talked about how she took chances with her career and how it was scary but that it worked out. I really appreciated her sharing her story with us. I don't really know what direction I want to go in for a career and to see someone that thought she knew what she wanted then changed her mind was a little reassuring. 

We went to NewsChannel4 and it was really different from News9. 


Their layout was different but the people there were really nice! Our tour was short and sweet and it was fun to take pictures in the studio. I think our class really had a good time at channel 4. We all took a bunch of pictures and joked around together.

I wasn't going to take the class but I chose to say yes to it and it literally took me places. It showed that even the professionals don't have everything figured out and that interviewing isn't something we should be scared of. The broadcast world is huge and the more you know and can do, the better off you will be. You want to constantly keep growing and learning and perfecting your craft and to always follow the money. As leery as I might be about the future, this class gave me a newfound excitement for an industry I fell into by default.