Sunday 10 March 2013

Work Placement Week One

This was to be a new one for me, at least something I hadn't done for almost fourteen years. Yes, after all that time being self-employed, I was going to work for someone else. This was different though for another reason, a big reason; for the first time in my life I was going to be working at something I liked doing. Finally, after years of doing jobs I had little or no interest in, I was going to be writing and working in a newsroom in a radio studio. Two things I like and I'm somewhat good at, writing and current affairs.

Monday morning I was nervous, very nervous, butterflies in my stomach nervous. I rationalized that I was going to give this a good shot and if things didn't  work out at least I'd have given it a try. Also, I reminded myself, that if I did my best nobody could knock me for trying.

At Radio Kerry a smiling Fiona Stack met me and brought me to the Kerry Today studio. The producer, Threasa, had interviewed me only a couple of weeks previously and behind the ops desk was Aine, a fellow student on my course. The friendly faces helped a lot.

The two hours of the show went quickly and I watched how comments came in, were vetted and passed for airing. Interviewees came and went and calls were processed and put through to the presenter. All in all it was good beginning.

In the newsroom afterwards, I watched while everyone went about their duties. Finally I was in a workplace where it was expected of you to read the paper, scan the news websites and follow Twitter. It was funny to be doing these things at work for a change. Threasa gave me press releases to follow up on and see if I could get a story. Not much luck with my first few calls but that's part and parcel of the job I suppose. My first day went well, I got a feel for what was expected on the job and I didn't make any mistakes.

Not a bad start.

On Tuesday I was asked to write the business news for the lunchtime bulletin. Also I was following a story regarding a release of a information booklet for teenagers. After a couple of calls I got an invite to the booklet launch and headed off there in the afternoon. Before that I wrote the business news and filed the copy.

At the launch I found the main speakers, interviewed them and headed back to the studio. I learnt a valuable lesson though, I could have and should have, found them before the launch began. That way I could have got my couple of minutes and missed sitting through all the speeches...

In the studio I wrote-up my piece and edited the interviews down to thirty seconds. My piece, my first piece from start to finish, went out on the news bulletins the next day. Not bad for my first couple of days.

As the week went on I was given more work to do and was involved more in program planning. Despite my initial nervousness on Monday, by Friday I felt quite at home in Radio Kerry.

Hopefully I can keep it up for the next few weeks.

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