Alumni counseled students on how to grow their skills and secure jobs and internships at the Media School’s inaugural Career Day.
Panels for students interested in media-related careers were held all day Friday at the Indiana Memorial Union.
The first panel concerned sports media and consisted of freelance writers, reporters and editors from SI.com, ESPN The Magazine and CBS4 WTTV.
Students filled the Maple Room for the public relations, advertising and marketing panel.
The panelists were executives and managers associated with advertising and PR firms such as the Chicago Tribune Media Group and a marketing start-up called PlaceIQ.
Panelists spoke about the importance of interconnectivity, the globalization of media and the virtues of internships.
“I think a lot of people coming into internships have the false perception that they need to know everything,” said Alexandra Brown, senior account executive at FleishmanHillard. “But you’re there to learn. You can learn a lot on the fly in just the day-to-day work.”
The increased use of the Internet in media is affecting the industry, adding to the list of things with which interns need to become familiar.
“Media is changing so much in how they function,” Brown said.
The television and film production panel consisted of editors and producers from Turner Studios and Bart Fox Productions.
Also in attendance were presidents of Third Eye Creative Advising and Kodak.
The news reporting and editing panel featured reporters and producers from 14 WFIE, the Washington Post, the New Yorker, ESPN The Magazine and CNN.com.
One of the most important steps to getting opportunities is forming relationships, several panelists said.
“To get a seat at the table, sometimes you have to get your foot in the door,” said Deanna Allbrittin, morning news anchor and reporter at 14 WFIE.
The panelists also emphasized having a typo-free resume and cover letter and getting experience outside of the classroom.
“Here, you can do whatever you want,” Washington Post and former Indiana Daily Student reporter Jessica Contrera said of students’ time at IU. “Focus on writing good stories, making things you’re proud of.”
Simultaneously, there was the entrepreneurs/freelance media professionals panel, consisting of a photojournalist, several freelancers and the president of Motion Picture and Entertainment from Kodak.
The final event of the IU Media School’s Career Day was a networking reception, which allowed students to have one-on-one interactions with the alumni.
Many alumni said the best advice they could give was to never say no to an assignment.
“You’re not above any story,” Contrera said. “Go and write the hell out of it. That’s your job.”