Work Placement at Reprezent Radio
Individual Audio Project: Reprezent the Youth
When researching my individual audio project, I started by researching the station’s biggest moments and industry talent that had worked there. This gave me initial insight into the kind of music and audience the station was focused on. I was also lucky enough to have done my work placement at the organisation, so I had a strong understanding of the station’s brand and identity.
Evidence of work placement
During my work placement I got extended insight into how a specialist music show operates on a community radio station. I worked as a producer alongside a presenter to create a show every Friday night from 9-11pm. We broadcasted live on FM radio, adhering to all of Ofcom’s regulations. A typical show would involve two to three guests that would do interviews and perform as MCs and DJs.
Preparation for the show would include coordinating with the guests and station to create promotional material. This would mean requesting press pictures of the guests and then sending them to the station with the relevant information. The images would then come back with the station’s official branding, ready for promotion on social media. On one occasion for a special event, I created a promotional video using music from guests, their press images, brand logos and an animated visualizer. I also would inform the guests of the times they should arrive at the station and its address. This taught me the importance of good communication and planning of content in the lead up to a show.
During the show I would make sure all the necessary equipment was on hand, including microphones, headphones, jacks and extra USBs (due to frequent errors on CDJs). If any are issues encountered I would troubleshoot them myself. Throughout the show I would stay in contact with the guests and ensure their arrival and that they understood what was going to happen before going on air. During interviews and performances I would manage levels of the presenter and guests via the mixing desk. I would also record them using two 4K cameras which could be vision mixed on a computer near the mixing desk. This taught me many of the technical aspects of the live broadcasting environment and typically how to solve technical issues in it.
After the show I would go about creating highlights and uploading performances. The highlights would be created using clips from the visual recordings throughout the show. I would then put them into a one minute clip, ready for social media. This one minute clip would then be used to point viewers towards the full versions of the sets on YouTube and Soundcloud. Sometimes the guests would also receive a copy of the highlights. Audio recordings may get some volume adjustments before being uploaded too. This taught me what moments in a show create good highlights to get people to engage with the longer form content.
Overall I learnt two very important lessons from the experience. One being the appropriate arc and pacing of a show. When to insert certain segments and what content works. The second is being clear and concise with everyone in the environment, to make sure everything runs as smoothly as possible and that there are no miscommunications. My constructive feedback was often taken on by the presenter, allowing us to create an open and effective working environment.
When working with my external commissioner, I gained valuable insight to his perspective on the organisation. I did this by having a lengthy discussion with him about the background of Reprezent before starting the interview. This allowed us to be clear with each other about what we wanted from the final piece. It meant that what he covered was relevant to the initial pitch. This was something that did not go as well in the other interviews I did and unfortunately led to them being cut.
In the short term I would like to work at a station that offers variety, giving me options for my future. In a perfect world this would be the BBC, Global or Wireless. After university I may immediately look for work at a community station in order to keep my skill set refreshed and find industry connections.
The long term career I want to pursue is something orientated around the production of broadcast journalism. Although I have spent the majority of my time doing music radio so far, I feel more interested in talk and politically oriented content. Although there are opportunities to work around the types of music and content I am interested in, they do not offer the kind of long term employment opportunities I am looking for.
Ideally I would like to be somewhere that focuses on world politics. This could be somewhere like the BBC World Service or Channel 4 News. Most news outlets also have podcasts that accompany their content that is most likely outsourced to a production company.
After my time at university I have realised that the topics surrounding foreign policy are what interest me the most. For example, my extended essay was on who the targets of ISIS propaganda are. Topics such as counter-terrorism, conflict and international affairs sound fascinating to work around. I will try to shift my career focus to media surrounding these topics. Eventually I would like to study the topic at some point, potentially at a post graduate level.
5 Steps Post Graduation
- Actively be on the lookout for job opportunities using the resources I have collected.
- Work at a community station part time to keep my skill set refreshed, expand my portfolio and make industry connections.
- Participate in schemes and events that are available to me to further my opportunities.
- Seek out personal and professional mentoring.
- Get myself into a position where I could potentially study again, part time.
|LinkedIn Profile||Allows employers to easily see my experience and background in the industry.||linkedin.com/in/milo-ritchie-7778a1195/|
|Radio Academy||To find out about schemes and events to network at.||radioacademy.org|
|Radio Today Jobs||To find out about jobs that are relevant to my capability and career interests.||radiotodayjobs.com/|
|Creative Access||To get career advice, mentorship and find out about potential opportunities in the media industry.||creativeaccess.org.uk/|
|media beans||To find out about jobs that are relevant to my capability and career interests.||mediabeans.io/|
|Indeed||To find out about jobs that are relevant to my capability and career interests.||uk.indeed.com/|
|Screen Skills||To find opportunities and training relevant to my career development.||screenskills.com/|
|Jobsite||To find out about jobs that are relevant to my capability and career interests.||jobsite.co.uk/|
|Zety||For resources relevant to employment such as this article about some of the most asked questions in interviews.||zety.com/blog/job-interview-questions-and-answers|
|The Media Mentor||David Spencer’s twitter account where he regularly posts jobs within the media industry is useful alongside other job sites.||twitter.com/themediamentor|
|AIR||A US focused site for independent audio producers that also posts about jobs in the UK.||airmedia.org/|
|BBC Careers Hub||To find jobs at the BBC that are relevant to my capability and career interests.||careershub.bbc.co.uk/|
|Contacts from my time at Reprezent||I have the contact details of people I worked closely with who now work at the BBC, Apple Music 1 and other stations.|
|European School for Leadership Development||A short course in International Security to help me further understand certain aspects of international affairs and conflict reporting. As well as some career advice.||eurosld.com/international-security|
|Further studies in international affairs and conflict.||I am deeply interested in international affairs and conflict. I would eventually like to do an MA on the topic, as well as working in media reporting on such topics.||kcl.ac.uk/study/postgraduate-taught/courses/international-affairs-mapg-dippg-cert|