Landing the Sportscenter anchor job may be as easy as winning ESPN’s reality show Dream Job. However, auditioning for it and making it to the finals is the difficult part. To get to that point and get noticed by casting personnel, audition tapes are essential as well as experience in front of the camera along with great references.
Broadcast journalism classes are a great starting point because of the hands-on knowledge and experience provided in these classes. Many of these classes analyze proper ways to approach a broadcasting job as well as the dos and don’ts. However, the greatest benefit of these classes is the time in front of the camera. It takes many hours in front of the camera to get comfortable with the role.
After college, the path often taken is to audition and land a job as an anchor and/or sports director for a television station in a small market. Since staffing at small televisions stations is often lean, this role may entail writing, reporting, broadcasting, and taping highlights at sporting events. It may seem like a lot of responsibility but it is a great way to gain experience in all facets of the position.
Doing a good job at a small station can set you up for an opening in a bigger market especially since the major networks often own stations in multiple cities. Therefore, moving up is very common.
When it comes to the actual duties of the position, it takes more than just reading a telestrator. It also includes taking cues from the producer, calling out names and statistics, and communicating in a clear and effective manner, all the while with a voice calling out instructions through your earpiece. If possible, watching past episodes of ESPN Dream Job is a great way to learn about what these professionals who have made the big time go through on a daily basis as part of their jobs.
How to Break In – Broadcast journalism classes, calling games in front of your TV, minor league sports teams, broadcasting play by play camps
Recommended Skills – Unique style, creativity, knowledge of the game, command of the language, speaking articulately, camera presence, clear voice, body language
Salary Range – $22,000 to $500,000+