I graduated from Westminster’s Broadcast and Digital Communications program in 2012. Currently, I am a producer and entertainment reporter for WTOV in Steubenville, OH. I’ll share a little about what I do.
As far as producing goes, I am in charge of the 5:00pm hour-long newscast. In the morning we have a big meeting with our reporters and news director about what stories are happening that day and then assign them. I keep tabs on the reporters throughout the day and send them to any breaking news.
Meanwhile, while they are out gathering, I am at the station putting together a rundown, ordering the stories, picking a lead story, filling the show with national and local content that flows together. It’s a time consuming job as you need to make sure that everything is written, spelled correctly, facts are checked, etc. Then, it’s time for the show. During the show I sit in the control room with the director and I am in charge of the content and timing of the newscast. It’s my responsibility to kill stories or add live shots depending on what’s happening, the director just executes what I tell him. It can get stressful especially when you have to add breaking news to the show and relay that to your anchors, but it’s about keeping calm and being assertive which comes with time.
In addition to producing, I have my own entertainment segment called the Foxlight. This is something I produce, write, and record every day for the 10:00pm newscast. This is all entertainment news, from celebrity gossip to new music to movies. It’s usually about a minute and a half segment. Recently, I have also been interviewing local musicians and bands around the area highlighting their stories as well. But it takes work to get to that point, I had to practice and keep recording segments until the company approved it and gave me the okay. It takes determination and passion to get where you want to be.
I love my job, gathering news, writing, being able to inform and entertain the viewers. Right now in college, I suggest getting involved as much as you can. Try out everything from writing radio news, being a DJ on Titan Radio, anchoring and reporting on WCN, and producing newscasts. Knowing how to do it all matters. It’s important to get a taste of radio and TV, being behind the camera and on it, and knowing how to produce a show or newscast. That way you figure out what you enjoy most and you get those skills. I went from Westminster to KDKA-AM in Pittsburgh as a producer. From there I moved into television at WTOV.
Today, employers want reporters who shoot their own stuff, edit, write and interview. They want anchors who can also produce and put together a newscast. It’s important to know how to do it all to get where you want to go.