It’s hard to believe I’ve been working at FOX Sports North for almost 6 months now, but like they say… time flies when you’re having fun.
I’ve been asked by a lot of aspiring sports broadcasters about my story, and how I was able to get a job right out of college… so here it is.
Flash back a year ago to my senior year at St. Cloud State when I worked my tail off. There wasn’t one day when I didn’t have a camera in my hand (maybe Sundays but those days are for Jesus). I was constantly busy, some people might have found the schedule exhausting, but I knew I loved this career when it didn’t seem like “work” to me. Sure— the deadlines and long nights were a little stressful, but I found so much enjoyment out of it that it paid off in the end.
The month of May rolled around and I was eager to get into the professional world, but still had 16 unfinished credits. “Sure, I’ll finish them this summer,” I thought. “Maybe…” (16 is a whole ton of credits by the way). I didn’t realize how badly I wanted to get a big girl job until I went back to living with my parents (Love you, Mom & Dad)… but for real, I needed to do something to get out of the house ASAP. So, I started applying for positions hiring in August and figured I’d finish school online throughout the summer/fall.
It all came down to a digital reporting position with an NHL team. My dream! I wanted to work for a hockey team so bad. The position had all of the responsibilities I was looking for, I sent in my documents and crossed my fingers. The very next day— I received an email back. They wanted to chat on the phone, so we talked about the position. They were very interested and ready to take me to the next step of the interview process, although there was one small, but very big, problem. To work in Canada, you need a work visa… to get a work visa, you need a college degree, which I hadn’t finished yet. I said I’d let them know if anything changes and really put my foot on the gas towards getting that diploma.
That next week, I was meeting with the Dean of SCSU to find a way I could finish all of these credits and finish school right on time for August (I wanted this job so bad). With 16… SIX-TEEN credits to go… I somehow managed to get them all done in 2 1/2 months… I was finally done with school! I couldn’t have been more excited, but right before I was able to let this team know, they informed me that the position had been filled. I was pretty bummed, but I knew applying for the first job wasn’t always going to work out, so I trusted in the process, and continued to update my website, reel, etc. It was hard to stay positive when I got turned down from a job, but it’s important to understand the TV business and how timing is everything.
Right here is when I learned God works in mysterious ways:
It was just days later that I was working my summer job, serving tables at a restaurant on Lake Minnetonka, when out of the blue I got a call from FOX during my shift, they wanted me to join a Twins Live show that weekend. “What?! Me!? Here we go!” I thought… “All or nothing!” I was so excited. *I didn’t apply for a position with FSN, but it helped that they knew me from covering college hockey in Minnesota.
I hadn’t been doing “TV stuff” for 3 months and here I was… about to be on the Twins pregame show… no pressure or anything. The nerves were unimaginable— but with patience and a lot of luck, I had an interview a week later to discuss a future with FOX Sports North. They were very pleased to hear I finished school, (I wouldn’t have finished if it wasn’t for the previous job application that accelerated the process) and they offered me a reporter position with the company. Just a timeline for you all, I finished school the first Friday in August and started my position that next week… it was crazy! I sometimes like to think back about how challenging it would have been had I moved to Canada for a job that seemed so exciting to me at the time, but now, I am able to work for the network I grew up watching and admire the same teams I grew up cheering for, it was a win-win.
Since then, it’s been a dream. Some days are challenging, some days are quiet and some days are so dang cool… but I still can’t believe how everything was able to work out. Just think— I was turned down from a job just so I was able to accept another one just days later.
For you broadcast students out there approaching graduation… there isn’t a simple “one size fits all” story of how you all will land your first job, but if I can give you any advice, be patient and be yourself. I know a lot of us “millennials” are wanting to put the pedal to the metal in life and rush to the next step, but you need to trust the process. There’s a plan for each of us out there! Being yourself will take you everywhere and anywhere! Most importantly, trust your gut… a lot of positions may sound glamorous, but be true to yourself. Will that position get you ahead in your career? Will you be successful in that kind of market? Will it work for you financially? etc. Most importantly, when/if you get turned down, don’t lose hope and keep working harder! There are many big things in store for you all.
And that, my friends, is my grand casino story.