Is there life after a journalism course? The Coventry Class of 2009 – Greg Keane

GREG KEANE graduated with a  2.1  in journalism and media from Coventry University in June this year. After turning a specialist interest into a small niche in journalism, he has found permanent work at BSKYS’ Sky Sports News channel.

In September, you heard from me on my efforts to secure work since graduating with a 2:1 in Journalism & Media at Coventry University back in June this year. Well I am delighted to inform you that back in October I was offered a full time position in TV news and for such as massive sports fan such as myself, it is in act a dream environment to do so; at Sky Sports News! Writes Greg Keane

My position as a Sports News Ingest Operator, means I am responsible for whatever footage you see on the channel. We must be across everything that is sent into the channel, whether that be live matches, press conferences, interviews, rushes etc. Editors and reporters are constantly in contact with us throughout the day trying to ingest material into the server, we’ll get calls from reporters across the world making sure what they are sending us down live is acceptable for air, or simply an editor or reporter will personally ask us to record a package they have just edited from tape onto the server, or vice-versa.

When breaking news occurs, or during busy match day, the job can be hectic but is rewarding knowing what you are doing is vital for the channel, as if I don’t get across something, the channel cannot show it- or at least cannot show it before anyone else can.

I felt after I graduated that it was vital to build up my CV and portfolio with a decent amount of published work in an attempt to look a far more attractive proposition to potential employers rather than someone who merely has a certificate indicating they had an interest in the subject.

As made reference to in my September’s piece, I had gone about trying to break into such a competitive industry by creating a niche for myself; that niche being Non League Football. I was writing for a number of local BBC Sport pages including BBC London and BBC Stoke & Staffordshire, whilst I had also become Chief Reporter of the site NonLeagueFootballLive.com.

I had also recently taken up the role as Press Secretary at Ryman League side Corinthian-Casuals where my reports made a number of local newspapers in the London area. Work experience at Mercia Radio in Coventry turned into paid part time work, working as a Tech-op on live broadcasts of Coventry City matches.

So after cramming all this work into four months, I felt my hard work had merited me applying for jobs I believed I was qualified for. As well as the demoralizing rejection letters from local newspapers across the UK, I too also received invitations for interviews, in fact, the first ones to offer me an interview were Sky Sports News.

This was my first ‘proper’ job interview and perhaps it was my unknown expectations of what an interview brings that got me though it, but most likely it was the honest answers I gave as every question that was thrown at me, I felt I genuinely had a reply for it. My four months of practical work (especially at Mercia for this position) certainly made me more than a worthy candidate for the position.

I had other interviews before Sky offered me the job, in fact I was offered a PR job in central London twenty minutes before Sky rang which I had accepted before informing them later that the Sky Sports job was too good to turn down.

So I have since located to Isleworth, with my shared house a two minutes walk from the Sky campus, which makes it very handy considering the shift pattern I work (Two weeks of 6am starts and 2 weeks with midnight finishes).

I am loving life at Sports News and really do appreciate how lucky I am just to get into company. Of course I am ambitious and hope to work my way up and perhaps do something on the reporting side of the programme, but that is years away- all I am concentrating on is getting passed my probation period and being as good as I possibly can be at the job I am enjoying now.

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