Below is some gold from Brandon Lowe a graduate of our Columbus campus. Brandon's interview literally takes you from the moment he thought about attending OCB, clear past after he graduated and entered the job hunt.
So yea, it isn't really pure review. The article is actually part review, part advice via interview.
OCB is Ohio Center for Broadcasting. BL is Brandon Lowe.
OCB: What have you been doing since you graduated from the Ohio Center for Broadcasting Columbus campus?
BL: Since graduation, I moved back to Charleston, WV and I am currently working with Bristol Broadcasting Company. I am a production assistant, assistant program director, and on air talent on a country station called WQBE.
OCB: Can you outline those initial steps where you found out about the Ohio Center for Broadcasting and then decided to attend?
BL I have always been interested in radio and the media in general. Although I never really agreed with the approach and facts delivered by the media. I felt like I could do it and maybe add my own flavor to local or national media. Then I saw an advertisement on the boob tube about OCB and decided to give it a try.
OCB: What was your favorite part about the program?
BL: My favorite part about the program has to be the hands on instruction and the fact that you have actual professionals in the business grading your projects or work. They know what they are talking about so for them to prepare you for what you will see in the business is very beneficial.
OCB: I remember you mentioning that you were initially getting frustrated after graduating in regards to the job search - what got you over the hump?
BL: I remember hearing as I was in the program that you are not guaranteed a job in this business. That is very true but at the same time you are never guaranteed a job in any profession.
To get over my own frustrations I decided to look out of market, do not try to go right into a top 25 or even top 50 market. Expand your horizons and start somewhere in the mid range of markets or even lower. The experience alone at lower end markets are necessary, you get to wear multiple hats (jobs) and you learn a lot!
OCB: Any last words of advice for prospective or current students?
BL: My advice for current and prospective students is keep your goals and strive to accomplish them. Make sacrifices where needed and always keep working at getting better. No matter how long you do this profession you can always be better! This business is very hard to get into and sometimes it seems you will never get to work in the business but you will if you keep at it and you sacrifice self pride and work where you can get an opportunity to expand your knowledge of broadcast media. NEVER GIVE UP! STAY FOCUSED!
Want to see some broadcasting careers? Click here to visit our careers page and download the 41 Careers in Broadcasting ebook!
By Bill Natale
Director, Illinois Center for Broadcasting
Note: In The History and Future of the Word Broadcast Part One, Bill discussed the beginnings of the word and how it was used early on. In Part 2, we go on to explore how the internet has shaped things.
The Internet has made broadcasting more democratic.
Broadcast as a “noun” is available and accessible to anyone with a viewpoint that can connect to the world with a computer. It can be as simple as sharing one’s thoughts via a blog to sharing an audio and/or video broadcast via various websites that distribute content for all the world to hear or see. No longer must one approach an executive suite to gain access to studios or equipment that can make broadcast as a “noun” a reality.
Social media via computer or cellular technology is creating a revolution unlike any the world has ever known.
Egyptians toppled a corrupt and oppressive government due in part to social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Video of the terror and oppression perpetrated by government forces on Iranians wanting CHANGE could be seen by the outside world due in part to cellular cameras that could transmit what they could capture.
The revolution is not only political – it’s cultural as well.
Corporations worldwide are still trying to figure out how to effectively utilize social media. Those who understand this social media and have marketable skills in this area will have successful futures in a broadcast world that is ever changing.
In an effort to provide our students with such skills, Ohio Illinois Center for Broadcasting curriculum will now include web-enhanced studies. OICB students will be prepared to meet those challenges – another reason to consider an Ohio Illinois Center for Broadcasting campus for a quality education.
Don’t take my word for it. Listen to the following report:
featured on National Public Radio about the promise for those prepared to take advantage of the most recent evolution – social media - in the ever changing world of broadcast.
By Bill Natale
Illinois Center for Broadcasting
Prior to the advent of electronic devices that reached the masses, Broadcast was part of the lexicon of farmers. The word, then only a verb, was defined as the “casting of seed sprayed over the fields.”
In some ways, very little has changed when it comes to the verb - broadcast.
When we broadcast today we spray messages out to the world via radio, television and Internet venues that reach millions of people. Just as radio was initially perceived as a threat to newspapers, TV was considered by many pundits to be a threat to radio and to the film industry. The facts however were just the opposite.
Many newspapers like the Chicago Tribune or the Milwaukee Journal became the licensee of radio and TV outlets in their communities and became rich media conglomerates.
The call letters for WGN-AM and TV stations stand for “The World’s Greatest Newspaper,” (or so the folks at the Tribune thought at the time). WTMJ AM/FM and TV stations had acronym call letters (TMJ) based on the parent company, “The Milwaukee Journal.” The “W” call letter indicates that the station resides East of the Mississippi. A “K” call letter (such as KNBC, Los Angeles) is used for all stations West of the Mississippi with the exception of two broadcast outlets, KYW in Philadelphia and KDKA in Pittsburgh. These two pioneers (KDKA and KYW) received grandfather status regarding their call letters and are the only two stations East of the “Mighty Miss” that may have a “K” in their call letters.
Radio and television stations evolved from being singular, separate entities (forced to create their program content locally) to becoming network-affiliated outlets that served as carriers of content created mainly in New York or Hollywood.
However the networking of radio and (later TV stations) unified the country in a way that the inter-continental railroad did for transportation and the telegraph did for sending messages and news from far-away-places.
The announcement of the news bulletin regarding the attack on Pearl Harbor was literally heard by all in the country at the very same time. The video view of the fall of the Twin Towers of New York on 9-11-2011 could be seen LIVE by everyone and anyone with access to a TV that day, not only in the U.S. but also worldwide with the arrival of cable and satellite communication systems.
The Internet has been blamed for the disappearance of the telegram and the demise of the newspaper. Telegrams may be passé but newspaper publishers will continue to thrive as online publications. TV and radio broadcasters must adapt and realize the possibilities that the Internet affords any company or anyone.
Stop back by the blog on Wednesday for Part 2 where Bill talks about how the Internet has further shaped the word Broadcast.
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By Jodi Franks
Last week, one of my favorite GA’s had the opportunity to interview at a local radio station for a promotions position.
As we were going over a mini check list of things to gather for his appointment, I added that he should always take extra copies of his resume. “Why?” He asked.
“Well,” I began, “Just because you may have emailed your entire demo and resume, chances are they didn’t print anything off, and trust me, you’ll seem really prepared. You’ll be able to refer to your resume just in case they ask you a question you aren’t prepared for. Plus, for me, having everything at my disposal puts me in control and eases my nerves”.
We then took it a few steps further, and put together another short demo of his more recent video work, a one sheet including his recently launched WordPress blog, and additional links to his LinkedIn account and Facebook. (Keep in mind this was a posting for a part time promotions assistant job).
On the day of his interview, he arrived 15 minutes early and knocked their socks off.
Turns out, they were not only looking for a Promotions Assistant, they were looking for someone to shoot and edit video for their website and maintain their station blog. By Brian revealing his extra qualifications, they realized that they could combine positions and hire him to do both jobs. They’ve already contacted him for his second interview.
For many of our “seasoned” students, this is probably common sense. Arrive early, take extra copies of your resume, and be over-prepared. As a student of The Ohio Center for Broadcasting, we preach the virtues of multi-tasking and living in two worlds, radio and television. Also, by embracing social media, having your own blog, and a strong internet presence, you become the front runner over other applicants that may have to be trained while you can hit the ground running.
Of course, being a graduate myself, I’m biased. I feel that as broadcasting careers change, so does our program.
Not sure what you can do with training from the Ohio Illinois Center for Broadcasting? Click here to download our 41 Careers in Broadcasting Ebook.
By Jodi Franks
You never know what you can do until you have to do it. ~ Betty Ford
In 1974/1975 all I knew was that when the President was going to speak on primetime television, that meant all my shows would be canceled for the evening. “Big stupid head”, I would think, “Who cares about that stuff anyway?”
I remember SNL skits where Chevy Chase would impersonate Gerald Ford and do these huge falls to mock our then president’s lack of grace.
Did Gerald fall a lot? I don’t remember.
What I do remember is that his wife’s name was Betty. I have an Aunt Betty, and I really like her, so that part was ok.
I started thinking about how much I knew, or didn’t know, about Betty Ford after I read that she had passed on July 8th. Sure, most people have heard of the Betty Ford Clinic, but it wasn’t until I read through her biography that I fully understood the scope of her influence during their time in office and beyond. She was the first “first lady” to break the taboo and talk openly about her battle with breast cancer, her battle with drug and alcohol abuse, she supported Roe vs. Wade, the Equal Rights Amendment, she openly acknowledged her children probably had premarital sex, or even worse, tried marijuana, and gave interviews that she and President Ford had a very healthy sex life and slept in the same bed. She was also a divorcee.
Remember, this was 1975, and these topics were s-c-a-n-d-o-l-o-u-s!
I can’t help but think that by breaking down barriers, by being a loud and elegant voice for changing times; she paved the way for topics to be discussed in an open media forum.
Instead of talking about decorating and gardening in the White House, she talked about her marriage, raising children, and that if the President’s wife could have breast cancer, any woman could, so they should schedule a mammogram.
That it is ok for a woman to work outside the home, expect equal pay, and still be a good parent.
Then I wondered, could Betty Ford have been a talk show host? Sharing her experiences, her candor, and her charisma? Could she have been Oprah before Oprah? Or did she merely pave the way to make it acceptable to share a private pain to let others know they aren’t alone. Betty Ford did all these things, and never campaigned for it. She once said that had she known her future husband had political aspirations, she may not have become Mrs. Gerald Ford.
Why is any of this relevant to anything as a student of The Ohio Center for Broadcasting?
Well, I’m gonna tell ya.
During my time as a student, an instructor once told me that your career is based on far more than yourself or becoming a star. Whose story will you tell to bring awareness to a cause or topic that should be discussed? As members of the broadcast community, our job is to share, inform, and educate our community. As the monster of social media continues to grow and evolve, we now have the added responsibility to raise others up around us to expand our “community” from just the city we live in to the furthest reaches of the earth.
Unlike Betty Ford, you became a student with The Ohio Center for Broadcasting to follow your dream of becoming a broadcast professional.
Whose story will you tell?
If you get a minute check out the Ohio Center for Broadcasting or Illinois Center for Broadcasting community on Facebook. We try to post engaging content there everyday.
If you pay attention to the social media experts you're always hearing them say things like "Ask your audience!" "See what the crowd says!"
Sooo, we did.
And your responses were awesome. REALLY awesome.
Our question to you:
"What is your best piece of advice to current or potential Ohio Illinois Center for Broadcasting students?"
Your responses below. I have formed them into 17 Quotes for Future Ohio Illinois Center for Broadcasting Students:
So that's it. What do you think? Anything you can add in the comment section below?
By Bill Natale
The following is an excerpt from an article written by School Director Bill Natale on a recent career panel at our Illinois Center for Broadcasting downtown Chicago campus.
On June 28th, the Illinois Center for Broadcasting Chicago campus sponsored a broadcasting career job fair. The event opened with a panel of broadcast professionals that included:
All of the panelists are in positions where they have experience either as a supervisor or one who hires new employees.
- Jill Bastian, an Illinois Center for Broadcasting grad that now works at NBC5 Chicago as a news producer
- Adam Abdalla, an ESPN sports producer
- Natalie Mason, Engineering Tech Supervisor for ABC7 Chicago
- Bob Carzoli, President of Program Productions (PP).
Mr. Carzoli’s company alone employs over 3200 freelance professionals in the field (camera operators, digital media, tape audio and satellite technicians, editors, production assistants, technical and DGA directors).
The question and answer that “hit home” for every grad that attended the panel discussion was the following exchange:
“What is the most important factor, the most critical qualification that you consider when hiring an individual?”
Jill, Adam and Natalie seconded Bob Carzoli’s answer, which surprised everyone but me.
“Dependability, being on time. Getting there 15 minutes early, never being late and developing a reputation for being reliable. My wife is having back-surgery as I speak but I made a promise to Bill Natale that I would be here – so here I am.”
Frankly when Bob called me that morning to tell me his wife was about to enter the operating room, I assumed he would not be able to attend.
The good news is that Bob’s wife is fine and she’s doing well, but I wanted to share this anecdote because it says a lot about character.
That’s why your class attendance is so important.
The first question prospective employers ask about a graduate is, “How many days did they miss?” After that employers inquire about attitude and aptitude, but their initial concern is to determine if you’re going to “be there” for them.
“Be there” (in class and in your internship) for yourselves and you’ll be able to demonstrate to a prospective boss that you’re worth the risk of being hired. That first job is always the hardest hurdle but it’s not insurmountable if you’ve got drive, ambition and character.
By Tish Hevel
1. Decide what you like.
For me, I liked writing. I think it’s kinda fun and challenging to tell a story, create a mood, choose words wisely…and communicate with a certain economy. Once I started hearing other people (reporters and anchors) reading what I had written, I got a real kick outta that too…and moved on to producing. I thought of that as a kind of newscast choreography, putting the stories together and identifying the “moments” within a program that might make the audience feel something.
2. Prepare. Study up.
Have a base of knowledge, even if it’s incomplete, about what you’re doing. Everybody’s learning…hopefully all the time. But you are expected to be intelligent enough to know what questions to ask. If you don’t, you won’t be taken seriously.
3. Expect to work hard.
The deadlines come quickly, and you gotta meet them. That means if you’re not used to being productive, moving fast, getting things done so you can do more, you either need to learn how to behave that way or go elsewhere. There simply isn’t time to get it all done any other way. Especially to work in a newsroom! It’s funny, you can tell who “grew up” in broadcasting by starting out in radio or TV news…they know how to get a lot done.
4. Learn several roles within your organization.
I began as a part-time desk assistant…then a writer, then promoted to being a producer. About six months after that, one of our reporters moved to a bigger market, and it was suggested that I go for the position. I liked producing, but it seemed to be expected of me that I’d want to move into a reporting role. I got the position, did it for three weeks, and hated every minute of it. It just wasn’t for me…I wasn’t confident enough in front of the camera at that time of my life. Lucky for me, I was able to return to producing. But I really value that experience. It helped me be an effective talent coach, and as a producer, I understood what reporters are up against. Never a bad idea to walk in someone else’s shoes, especially when you’re managing other people.
5. Know yourself.
If you like to know what’s happening before everyone else does, broadcasting may be for you. If you get excited in a breaking situation, and feel like time demands and difficult challenges bring out the best in you, you could be very successful in this business. If you stay calm and focused in the midst of chaos, you could be a great performer, on camera or otherwise. But if those things make you anxious, or defensive, or you get irritated by people with strong personalities, you could find yourself very unhappy in broadcasting. All of those things are pretty much the norm.
Here’s what I do know: working in broadcasting allows a person to be in the midst of events while they’re happening. And it allows a person to create content for an audience to consume. Let’s face it…those things are thrilling! Whether you’re in tv or radio, news or entertainment, talent or tech…for many of us the things that broadcasting lets us see and feel and do is just plain fascinating. It’s also demanding. Very demanding. Once you’ve got a good grasp on what makes you tick, I think you’re in a better position to decide.
Want to schedule a tour of the Ohio Illinois Center for Broadcasting and see what training for a career in Television would be like?